One of the most famous songs ever of the Italian music scene is Piazza Grande by Lucio Dalla. Known throughout the world, the beautiful ballad is a true declaration of love of the artist to one of the main places of interest in his hometown, Bologna. Bologna is an active, multicultural city open to innovation, but it is also a place characterized by the presence of landmarks and meeting places for its citizens, which is why, although it is a large populous city, it is not uncommon for the inhabitants to gather in these much loved places. The lyrics of Piazza Grande also have a more hidden meaning, which touches the soul of the listener.
Lucio Dalla is one of the most famous names of the Italian music scene. The artist, who died a few years ago, spent his entire life among the streets of his beloved hometown of Bologna. It is in Bologna that most of his songs are set and his home in Bologna, has now become a museum (“a casa di Lucio“) open to visitors and characterized by the presence of beautiful artifacts and works of art. The artist also possessed two other famous residences, one near the Tremiti Islands (to which he also dedicated a song) and the other on Mount Etna.
The song Piazza Grande is one of his most famous of all time and is a true declaration of love to his beloved Bologna, city from which he never wished to move if not for short vacations. The text actually has ambiguities about the location.
Piazza Cavour, Bologna
. Piazza Grande, in fact, does not exist in Bologna. It is instead the main square of the nearby city of Modena. Often the people of Bologna refer to Piazza Maggiore as “Piazza grande”, because it is the main meeting place of the city. However it seems that the text of the song was not dedicated to either, but to a smaller square near the childhood home of the singer.
Piazza Grande: To which square does it refer?
The music of the artist Lucio Dalla, as revealed within the film/documentary of 2011 dedicated to him by a very close collaborator, does not refer to Piazza Maggiore. Piazza Maggiore is located in the center of Bologna and is 115 meters long, surrounded by some of the most beautiful historical buildings of the place. The song refers to Piazza Cavour, a location in the historical center, in the middle of which stands a statue dedicated to Camillo Benso di Cavour, located inside a small public garden. The lyrics, in fact, talk about “benches and grass”, which in Piazza Maggiore are obviously absent.
The text of the song Piazza Grande
The lyrics of Lucio Dalla’s Piazza Grande are dedicated to a homeless man who spends his life on the streets and steals with his eyes what the world has to offer. Interesting is the duality between the needs and desires that unite any living being, regardless of his social class (here we cite the verses “in my way I need caresses too… In my own way I need to dream too “). The Clochard, however, does not want to give up his freedom to see his desires and dreams fulfilled, and here at the end of the text the song states: “But I will never change my life… In my own way what I am I wished for. “
Bologna: what to see? What to eat?
Bologna is famous for its red roofs and the deep-rooted culinary culture that has always characterized it. If you are wondering what to see in Bologna, we suggest you visit the garden which is spoken about in Piazza Grande by Lucio Dalla but also the other local attractions. Like Piazza Maggiore, the Torre degli Asinelli (with its splendid view of the Bolognese skyline), the financial quadrilateral, the covered market and the underground Bologna. And, if you are curious about what to eat in Bologna, you should know that the choice is really varied. It starts typical dishes such as the friggione bolognese and tortellini in broth to pass on to lasagna, noodles with meat sauce and the famous stuffed Tigelle.