Perché “Arpa”

Con l’arrivo di Andrea Bocelli quale Presidente Onorario è parso opportuno trovare un simbolo musicale per identificare la Fondazione.

bocelli

Arpa non è un acronimo bensì lo strumento musicale, peraltro diffuso in tutto il mondo, in tutte le civiltà fin dagli albori ed in varie interpretazioni di forma e sonorità.

Ad ispirare il nome Arpa sono stati tre riferimenti ben precisi, densi di nobili contenuti e di valori a cui la Fondazione da sempre si ispira: l’arpa imploratadal Coro degli Schiavi nel Nabucco, l’arpadel racconto Zen “Veri Amici” e dal capolavoro cinematografico “Arpa Birmana”.

“Arpa d’or dei fatidici vati” (Nabucco, Giuseppe Verdi, 1842 su libretto di Temistocle Solera)

Il coro degli schiavi ebrei, il popolo, invoca con veemenza l’Arpa da troppo tempo “muta”: “le memorie nel petto riaccendi” una esortazione per riappropriarsi degli antichi valori fondando su di essi un patto per il riscatto. Come dire che nei momenti di grande difficoltà serve più che mai rinnovare la forza morale.

L’arpista del racconto zen, “molto bravo a suonare l’arpa” taglia le corde del suo strumento nel momento in cui muore l’amico “molto bravo ad ascoltare”.

l'arpista

Che senso ha dunque prodigarsi senza riuscire a stimolare condivisione e partecipazione.

Un concetto analogo è presente nel Vangelo di Matteo:

matteo

arpa birmanaMizushima, il protagonista de “L’arpa Birmana” (Giappone 1956, diretto da Kon Ichikawa. Premio San Giorgio alla Mostra Internazionale del Cinema di Venezia del 1956) si è costruito lo strumento con il quale ristora lo spirito dei suoi commilitoni sfiniti dalla marcia attraverso la foresta birmana cercando di sfuggire al nemico in guerra.

Dunque la Musica che unisce gli uomini e li risana nello spirito.

Mizushima si fa bonzo separandosi dai suoi compagni fino al punto di fingere di non riconoscerli. Egli non sarà fisicamente sulla nave che riporta la Compagnia in Patria; lo sarà idealmente con il suo testamento spirituale contenuto nella lettera di addio affidata al Comandante perché, una volta sulla via del ritorno, la legga agli amici che tornano in Patria sorpresi ed attoniti nell’apprendere la scelta di vita, la priorità esistenziale di Mizushima: un dovere, un ruolo. Un addio struggente come la musica d’arpa che l’accompagna.

Franco Mosca

Presidente Fondazione Arpa

 matzushima

bocelli solo“…Alcuni anni fa mi trovavo in ospedale per assistere mio padre gravemente ammalato. Allora ho sentito profondamente la sua sofferenza e quella di altri malati.

Un giorno il Prof. Mosca, direttore di quel reparto, mi chiamò nella sua stanza e mi parlò della possibilità di sostenere una fondazione per promuovere lo sviluppo della medicina. Mi propose di presiedere quella fondazione. Inizialmente fui sorpreso e anche preoccupato, forse per l’importanza che quell’impegno significava. Presi tempo per riflettere.

Ripensai alla sofferenza che costringeva quei malati a perdere anche la dignità. Ricordai l’incessante attività dei curanti che si adoperavano con tutti i mezzi disponibili. Mi resi conto che la mia immagine pubblica poteva essere di grande aiuto. Alla fine accettai l’incarico e si costituì la Fondazione Arpa.

Il nome Arpa lo scelse il professore, colpito da un’antica storia Zen in cui si racconta che la musica esiste solo finché esiste chi ascolta. Inoltre l’arpa possiede un peculiare effetto di risonanza per cui quando una corda viene pizzicata, per ‘simpatia’ risuonano tutte le altre. Così mi piace pensare che la generosità di alcuni possa stimolarne altri a dare, per migliorare un bene di tutti.

Ringrazio tutti coloro che ci vorranno sostenere”.

Andrea Bocelli

Presidente Onorario Fondazione Arpa

 

 

«…Some years ago I was in hospital to assist my father who was seriously ill. I took part to his and other ill people sufferings when Prof. Mosca, head of the Dept. asked me to support a Foundation aimed at promoting the development of medicine. 

I was surprised and worried, at the same time. 

I did not give a prompt answer to such a demanding commitment. 

I took time.

I thought of the sufferings of the people I have met by chance and the incessant work of doctors. I realized, at the end, how helpful my popularity might be to the cause and I accepted to be the Honorary President of ARPA. Its name was chosen by Prof. Franco Mosca who had been impressed by a Zen story, telling that music exists as far as there is someone listening to it. 

The musical instrument named “harp” has the peculiarity to make all the strings resonate if only one string is plucked. Thus, I like thinking that the generosity of one person, can stimulate others to do something in favour of the public welfare. I want to thank in advance, all people who will support us».

Andrea Bocelli

Honorary President Fondazione Arpa

 

Why “Arpa”

Further to Maestro Bocelli’s honorary presidency it seemed appropriate to find a musical symbol to identify the Foundation.

Arpa is not an acronym but is rather the musical instrument, worldwide popular, in all cultures since the outset of time, in different forms and acoustics.

Three are the inspirations for Arpa’s name: all of them rich of meaning and importance, which all along guide the Foundation’s aims. The harp, consecrated by Nabucco’s slaves choir; the harp from the Zen tale “True friends”; the masterpiece movie ”Biruma no tategoto”  (The Burmese harp).

“Arpa d’or dei fatidici vati” (Nabucco, Giuseppe Verdi, 1842, libretto by Temistocle Solera)

The Hebrew slaves choir, aka the people, powerfully pleads the too-long mute harp:  “le memorie nel petto riaccendi” (“you raise the memories in our chests”). It urges to seize old virtues, founding above them a redemption pact. In other words, in rough times it’s more than ever necessary to restore a moral strength.

The harp player, in the Zen tale, who was “very skilled in playing the harp”, cuts his instrument strings as son as his “very skilled in listening” friend dies.

Long time ago, in China, there were two friends. One was very good at playing harp. The other was very good at listening. When the former played or sang of a mountain, the latter said: “I can see the mountain, as if it were in front of us”. When the first played of a stream, the one listening burst out: “I hear the water flowing”. But the listener got hill and died. The first friend cut his harp strings and never played again. Since then, cutting the harp’s strings, has always been a great friendship proof.

From 1010 Zen tales Publisher: Adelphi, page 92, “True friends”

Which is therefore the use of being lavish without sharing and involvement inspiration.

A similar concept is in the Gospel: (Matteo 11,17)

We played the flute and you didn’t dance, we sang a lament and you didn’t mourn.

Mizushima, the key player of  “L’arpa Birmana” (Japan 1956, director Kon Ichikawa. San Giorgio prize at Mostra Internazionale del Cinema di Venezia, 1956) fabricates the instrument, playing which he revives the spirits of his comrades. They are worn out by the march thru the Burmese forest, trying to escape the enemy during the war.

Therefore music links men and heals their spirits.

Mizushima converts himself in a bonze, parting such from his comrades that he pretends not to recognize them. He won’t physically be aboard the ship taking his fellows back home.  He will ideally be there with a farewell letter, his spiritual will, put in the hands of the Captain. Once under way, he shall read it to his friends, homeland bound.  They will be startled and amazed coming to know Mizushima’s life choice and his existential priority: a duty, a role. An heart breaking farewell, like the music of the accompanying harp.

Franco Mosca

Arpa Foundation President

Mizushima’s farewell from “Arpa Birmana”.

Dear Captain and dear friends,

I’m unable to say how much I miss you, nor I can say how much I’d love to come back with you, work with you, chatter with you, play and sing again. How I would go back to Japan. How I wish I could roam my thorn Country and see my relatives again. I miss the words to express all of this in a better way, but I cannot go back home. I won’t come back till in Burma there will be unburied bodies of our comrades. Therefore I stay here, to go back over the war roads. Do you remember when we met on the bridge?  I wish I stopped and told you what I intended to do. But I couldn’t even talk, I was forceless. I wanted to do what I planned, to the very end. I rode over the mountains, I waded across the rivers, like the war had crossed them with an insane scream. I’ve seen the burnt grass, the charred fields. Why such devastation fell on the world? And the light enlightened my thoughts. No human thought can answer a cruel question. I couldn’t, but bring some pity where only ruthlessness existed. How many should feel this sympathy. Then war would not matter, nor pain, nor destruction, nor fear. If only a few tears of human charity could raise from these, I wish to bring my mission ahead, continue in endless time, up to the end, and that’s why I asked the bonze who saved me from death on the Triangle hill to give me the custody of the unburied men. The Captain told me to come back to Japan and work to reconstruct the Country, thorn out by the war. I remember his words very well: but when I saw the dead lying down unburied, pray of vultures, and the forgetfulness and the indifference, I decided to stay, so that the thousands and thousands of souls knew that a loving memory reminded them all, one by one.

Years will run, many years, before I finish, and then, if I’ll be allowed, I’ll come back to our homeland. Perhaps I’ll never return: the soil won’t be enough to cover the dead.

My dear friends, I know that you can understand me, and I’m grateful of such. I’m writing you from the Monastery, during the night, and the parrot is saying: “Hey, Mizushima, come back to Japan with us”. I listen to him and I swear I’d really wish to return. Today my desire was strong, I couldn’t stand it I played my harp.

The farewell song for you. Farewell my friends, going back to homeland.

I confess that I would never stop saying goodbye.

 Thank you my friends for looking so much for me. I thank you with all my touched heart: I shall be here in Burma when it will snow, and the mountains will hide the south cross, and when I’ll be memories-thirsty, when I’ll feel nostalgia of you, I’ll play my harp again. You’ve been my friends for so long: I’ll remember you all, that’s what I want to say.

Yasuko Mizushima

 

 

 

SOSTIENI ARPA

Qualsiasi contributo versato a nostro favore non solo rappresenta un atto di generosità, ma gode anche di agevolazioni fiscali (articoli 3 bis lett. i-bis e 65 D.P.R. 917/86

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