by Maria Del Porto

Tammurriata is the mix of traditional songs and dances played by the sound of the “Tammorra”, circular frame with a single drum head stretched across one side of the instrument.
The dance “‘ncopp ‘o tammurro” or “tammurriata” is a couple dance (man-woman but also man-man or woman-woman), that has ancient origins, tied to mother earth cults. This kind of cults were celebrated in all the Mediterranean area.

The dance has a coreutic structure: couple of dancers move inside of a circle keeping the rythm with castanets. The couple of dancers refers to a step code following the rythm, dancing freely on their own. The couple dances inside of a circle creating, depending on the sex, the age, and the situation, always a new execution.

There are different kinds of “tammurriata” that are played and danced in the Vesuvian area in popular parties, dedicated to the Madonna, but also related to the annual production of the cereals.