Pocket Poetry Orchestra


That of Biagio Guerrera is a new Sicilian chansonnier, a collection of verses but also of songs, arranged together with some of the protagonists of the new island music scene.
One might think that the new collection of verses in Sicilian by Biagio Guerrera is a book about love. You could call it Amùri, but it’s called Amàri.
Love and Love do not mean the same thing: Love is name but also idea, concept, often ideal;
Instead, loving is a verb and an act that, declined depending on the circumstances, tells stories and emotions, is listened to or whispered, is shouted out loud. Loving is pervaded, yes, by Love, but it also contains in itself the daily life, the smell and the pains of a single life and
many. Here then is what Amàri is: poem and song of one life and many.


«Guerrera is a poet of the Mediterranean (…), of those singers who climbed on sailing ships and steamers and from port to port landed their legends and melancholy» – Giovanna Giordano


Line Up x Amàri

Biagio Guerrera voice
Simona Di Gregorio voice, organ
Vincenzo Gangi guitar
Giovanni Arena double bass
Riccardo Gerbino tabla, percussion



“Aveva assai ca nunni sinteumu”,  from the album “Amàri”



“Presagiu”, from the album “Amàri”




Venerdì Santu, from the album “Amàri”

Sta arrivannu l’amuri, from the album “Amàri”


Nenti sutta u suli nenti subbra

This is another production of the PPO dedicated to the poet Salvo Basso in the decade since his death. The reading comes after a study on the music of the verses of Salvo Basso that Biagio Guerrera leads now since 1998 and will be dedicated to one of the great passions of Basso: the Old Testament and in particular the Ecclesiastes of which qo (1999 Edizioni l’Obliquo, Brescia) represents an extraordinary and very personal rewriting as well as the Canticle of Songs inspired Canticanticanticu (in AA. VV Catania Sotterranea, 1999 Officine Catania) these texts will be accompanied by other texts of Basso and a poetic rewrite of the same Biagio Guerrera.


«A mmoriri semu tutti sperti ca sulu a vita nun c’è riparu (To die we are all good, that only from life there is no shelter)» – Salvo Basso


Line Up x Nenti sutta u suli nenti subbra

Biagio Guerrera voice
Murray Lachlan Young voice
Vincenzo Gangi guitar
Giovanni Arena double bass
Marina Borgo percussion
Riccardo Gerbino percussion

Music by Vincenzo Gangi and Biagio Guerrera
Pictures of Aldo Palazzolo


About Us

The Pocket Poetry Orchestra was founded in 2007 by an idea of Biagio Guerrera, which follows and expands the experience of the poetic-musical encounter between the Tunisian poet Moncef Ghachem and the Italian-Palestinian group of Dounia, experience merged into reading.
From the shores of the white sea, recorded on CD and contained in the homonymous book published in 2003 by Mesogea.
The PPO has a variable staff that can include the four members of the Dounia (the Palestinian singer Faisal Taher, the guitarist Vincenzo Gangi, the double bass player Giovanni Arena and percussionist Riccardo Gerbino) with the addition of percussionist
Marina Borgo, the multi-instrumentalist Stefano Zorzanello, the singer Simona Di Gregorio and Biagio Guerrera, as actor and director. The basic group is composed from time to time with the addition of guest poets and soloists according to the needs of different productions. The PPO wants to be an ensemble that has as its particular purpose that of the sound investigation between music and word, to create a homogeneous musical and vocal fabric: a sound flow that can give the listener a single sound in which the word of the text is completed by the music, and never inhibited. After the first work, Quelli che bruciano la frontiera, on texts by Moncef Ghachem and Biagio Guerrera, (Ethnosuoni 2011), in the same year he debuted reading with Ronny Someck and Eyal Maoz (Israeli poet and guitarist). In 2012 the Nenti sutta u suli nenti subbia with texts by the poet Salvo Basso, on the occasion of the tenth anniversary of the death of the Sicilian poet. 2015 Sicilia Segreta, with unpublished texts by poets Moncef Ghachem, Jaroslaw Mikolajewski and Peter Waterhouse, videos by Documenta, Carlo Lo Giudice and Raffaella Piccolo and with the participation of Cochi Ponzoni.


The Pocket Poetry Orchestra has already presented its reading concerts at:
Mantova, Festivaletteratura
Roma, Auditorium Parco della Musica
Palermo, Fondazione Orestiadi di Gibellina
Sidi Bou Said, Tunisi, Journèes Théâtrales de Carthage
Napoli, Galassia Gutenberg, Galleria Toledo
Catania, Zo, Centro Culture Contemporanee, Uva Grapes
Trieste, Mediterraneo Folk Fest
Capo Peloro (ME), Parco Horcynus Orca
Caltanissetta, Teatro Margherita
Genova, Genova Poesia, Palazzo Ducale
Noto, Le Notti di Giufà
Varsavia, Istituto Italiano di Cultura
Cracovia, Sinagoga Popper | Austeria


Biagio Guerrera, born in Catania in 1965, studied singing with Michiko Hirayama. He is one of the founders of the artistic collective Famiglia Sfuggita, with which in 1992 he presents, in Santarcangelo dei Teatri, Idda, later included in his first poetic collection entitled Idda (Il Girasole, 1997).
In 2003 he participated in the creation of Dalle sponde del mare bianco (Mesogea, 2003), together with the Dounia and the Tunisian poet Moncef Ghachem. In 2009 he published his second poetic collection, Cori niuru spacca cielu (Mesogea) and in 2011 Quelli che bruciano la frontiera (Folkstudio ethnosuoni) together with Moncef Ghachem and the Pocket Poetry Orchestra.
His interest in the Sicilian language led him to collaborate with the playwright Carmelo Vassallo and to work on the texts of Salvo Basso and Nino De Vita, signing some operas taken from poetic works (including: Idda, L’incittà, ‘U spavintapàssari, Le vecchie e il mare, Nenti sutta u sulnenti subbra). Carries out an intense activity of curator and cultural operator in various associations (Associazione Musicale Etnea, Festival Internazionale di poesia Voci del mondo, Leggerete, SabirFest). His texts have been published in various magazines and anthologies, in Italy and abroad. Casa Munnu (Mesogea, 2021) is his latest collection.
In 2019 he won the Lerici Pea Prize “Paolo Bartolani” on the recommendation of Andrea Camilleri and Manuel Cohen.


Salvo Basso (Giarre, 1963 – Scordia 2002), graduated in history and philosophy at the University of Catania, has carried out cultural and political activities in Scordia where he was councillor for public education and deputy mayor. Animator of the Coordination of the cities of Calatino for culture and promoter of the magazine Città di città periodico delle città storiche siciliane; he collaborated with eupolis rivista delle città storiche toscane directed by Pietro Toesca. He wrote poems for Milky Way and The Drunken Boat, Molloy.
In 1997 he published the volume of poems Quattru sbrizzi pesso le Edizioni Nadir, of which he was the coordinator. He then published Qo (Edizioni dell’Obliquo), Dui (ed. Prova d’autore, 1999) and Ccamaffari (ed. Prova d’autore, 2002). After his death numerous collections of unpublished have been published among which we point out U tempu cc’è, with photographs by Aldo Palazzolo, Studio Focus Editore 2005; Un pensiero che non finire – Versi (1997-2002), a c. by Sebastiano Leotta, Edizioni Novecento 2006.
Since 2003, the “Premio Salvo Basso-Città di Scordia” has been created for a book of poetry in one of the dialects of Italy.
Salvo Basso was an author who made the Sicilian language a new, modern expressive tool, fully aware of the Italian literary poetic tradition of recent years. Irony, a taste for aphorism, struck lightning and intelligent are the hallmark of his poetry with the ability to grasp in the discard the most dense and unpredictable truth.

Tuppetturu Booking | English