"Improvvvisazioni (Improvisations). Voci per un dizionario di jazz e letteratura (Voices for a Dictionary of Jazz and Literature)


A very personal dictionary, punctuated by some fundamental lemmas of modernity - Ambiguity, Failure, Invisibility, Lightness, Melancholy, Universality, etc. – which suggests possible analogies between jazz and 20th century literature. Jazz, in addition to being a musical genre, coincides with a state of mind and a "morality": it reminds us that anything that resembles real life cannot be stable, it does not allow any possession (just like poetry).

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Improvisations – Author Filippo La Porta
(Saint Louis Doc series – Stefano Mastruzzi publisher, 2023)

In some writers of the twentieth century, in their writing and in their poetics, the restless and playful spirit of jazz emerges. Through dictionary entries – without any claim to completeness – Céline, Kerouac, Ellison, Savinio, Cortazar, Gadda, Pasolini find themselves in dialogue with Jelly Roll Morton, Armstrong, Ellington, Monk, Davis, Melba Liston, Coltrane…
The book ends with three interviews with Marcello Rosa, Federica Michisanti and Stefano Di Battista.
Improvisations for Bontempelli, jazz is based on a sense of "imminent danger". If you don't feel - in what you are listening or reading - a little of this "danger", rest assured: it is not authentic literature, nor true jazz.

The author
Filippo La Porta, critic and essayist. He writes regularly in "Repubblica," "Il Riformista" and the journal "Left." He teaches at the Holden School and other writing schools.
Of his countless publications we mention the following: La impossibile cura della vita (The Impossible Cure of Life). Three Doctor-Writers: Chekhov, Céline, Carlo Levi (Castelvecchi, 2021); Il bene e gli altri (The Good and the Others). Dante un’etica per il nuovo millennio (Dante an ethics for the new millennium) (Bompiani 2018); Poesia come esperienza. Una formazione nei versi (Poetry as experience. A formation in verse) (Fazi 2013), Rome is a lie (Laterza 2012); Pasolini (Il Mulino 2012), La nuova narrativa italiana (The new Italian novel) (Bollati Boringhieri 1995).

The editor
Saint Louis Doc is the editorial series, born within the Saint Louis College of Music in Rome and directed by Stefano Mastruzzi publisher, which includes both specific teaching manuals for musicians and a series, edited by Vincenzo Martorella, popular texts edited by important journalists and literary critics, dedicated to all lovers of music and literature.