This musical composition is dedicated to Luigi Freguglia (1890-1917) who was decorated with a gold Medal for Military Valour. He was part of the Arditi (The Daring Ones), a troop of carefully selected soldiers employed to carry out high-risk operations. These elite troops were also called Black Flames because of the decoration on their jacket collars. The cover of this publication, drawn by Italian illustrator Leopoldo Metlicovitz (1868-1944), shows the typical heroic iconography of a Black Flame soldier: a dagger clenched between the teeth, and a hand grenade. The music, widespread during the war, was later re-used by Italian fascists between the 1920s and 1940s.
- Article by:
- Kate Kennedy
- Representation and memory
As there were war poets, were there also war composers? Dr Kate Kennedy reflects on the role of classical music – by turns morale-raising and commemorative – and its composition among civilians and combatants.