In the tradition of Carissimi and Handel, Falvetti’s very original music expresses the strong cross-cultural dimension of Sicily, a land blending singing from the East and West. Il Diluvio Universale,“dialogue with five voices and five instruments” was performed in Messina in 1682, the year Michelangelo Falvetti was appointed Chapel Master of the cathedral.
The story is one of the Old Testament’s best known and most tragic: God, weary of mankind’s wickedness and corruption, decided to eliminate man and all forms of life together with him, sending rain on earth for forty days and forty nights. He spared only Noah, his family and animals of each kind, which He had ordered Noah to shelter in the Ark. This subject is perfectly adapted to a dramatic treatment and the two authors find very efficient inspiration all along the work. Vincenzo Giattini’s libretto enabled Falvetti to develop the drama of the story with a genius rare in works of the period. The great Leonardo García Alarcón and his brilliant musicians have indeed rediscovered a masterpiece.