Medieval flag art stuns Delhiites

Medieval flag art stuns Delhiites

Dressed in brilliantly coloured costumes, the ‘Storici Sbandieratori delle Contrade di Cori’ - the Italian flag waver’s band, at the very first glimpse left tourists and visitors awestruck.

Giving no hint of what the audience was about to witness in the next couple of minutes the professional folklore group arranged themselves in a line and raised colourful flags high up in the air. Thereafter began an amazing interplay of sound and movements of flags.

As a part of the sixth edition of Delhi International Arts Festival, the Storici group comprising young and not so young Italian men, presented before a gaping audience this unique art form of flags.

With low rhythmic beats of the drums and shrill, clear sounds of the trumpets in the backdrop, the artists began to wave flags in a synchronised manner.

Whirling, swirling, tossing and exchange of flags displa­y­ed a rare combination of energy, skill and colour that captivated onlookers.

Within 15 minutes, the artists presented the fastest choreography in harmony and presented excellent examples of individual strength.

While a dozen artists played drums and trumpets, another group of young Italian men created a spectacular formation while simultaneously playing with colourful flags. In red, blue, yellow and green, flags with the images of a castle, tree and a roaring lion showcased the history and the growth of Italy as a nation after the fall of the Roman Empire and emergence of Church, its community and people.

Interestingly, the waving of flags started as a martial art and gradually distinguished itself for its juggling and versatility in movement.

In 1976, a group of men studied the medieval art form of waving the flag, described in the medieval documents of ‘Acta’. Over years, this art form gained a professional outlook. These artists now travel around the globe, presenting this traditional art form.

After the success of Opera Cavalleria Rusticana’s in 2011, the Embassy of Italy in New Delhi in collaboration with Delhi International Arts Festival, The City Palace Jaipur and the Neemrana Music Foundation presented Storici group in India.

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