In a stunning act of unity and expression, Italian citizens in Siena came together this week to sing into the night sky from inside their homes. Quarantined, they are like song-birds singing from a distant, unseeable place. A musical, expressive, and deeply artistic culture, Italians value family and togetherness—so it’s no wonder they will break out in song. Even in the darkest times, we are capable of beauty and hope.
In the following videos captured in the Siena night, residents sing a somber but hopeful chant into the bleak, deserted streets, the sounds of dogs and humans echoing far and wide.
A Siena, città alla quale sono molto legato, si sta in casa ma si canta insieme come se si fosse per la strada. Mi sono commosso pic.twitter.com/IDPqNEj3h3
— David Allegranti (@davidallegranti) March 12, 2020
The video above was captured by David Allegranti, an Italian newspaper writer. He told HuffPost, “The first time I saw it I started to cry.” The song’s translation might go something like this: “In Siena, the city to which I am very attached, you stay at home but you sing together as if you were on the street.” No, you’re crying.
Here’s a different video, captured from another angle. The caption says something like, “To exorcise fear, to feel less alone. Cities that find themselves rediscovering communities. This virus will pass, we will make it, and we will be more united and stronger than before…”
I contradaioli dell’Oca a Siena intonano dalle loro case il Canto della Verbena. Per esorcizzare la paura, per sentirsi meno soli.
Città che nella difficoltà si riscoprono comunità. Questo virus passerà, noi ce la faremo, e saremo più uniti e più forti di prima.#iorestoacasa pic.twitter.com/jgXCL8aGfo
— Nicola Danti (@DantiNicola) March 13, 2020
Other videos have been captured in other parts of Italy, including in Naples:
As well as in Benevento and Salerno:
And everyone found it all so beautiful:
Need a break from depressing corona virus news? Watch people singing together from balconies in Italy.https://t.co/gonAYA4Sov
— Lizzie Roberts (@BerlinLizzie) March 13, 2020
— Kevin Pigott (@TullamoreDewkev) March 13, 2020
This is epic and so heartwarming. Singing in the streets of Italy. I wonder what the UK streets would sing. 🤔 Land of hope and glory, Swing low, sweet chariot? Wonderwall? Bohemian Rhapsody? Chumbawamba? #Covid_19 #COVID_19uk #Corona https://t.co/EEWtQz7VGI
— Aidan Shaw (@DrAidanShaw) March 13, 2020
Others mentioned that it’s also happening in Hong Kong:
Reminds me of Hong Kong 🤩https://t.co/8fyxuP9A4l
— Anne Nili 🇮🇱 🇫🇮 (@AnneNili) March 13, 2020
This all occurs as the death toll continues to rise in Italy. 15,000 people are estimated to be sick, while 1,000 have died, reports the BBC. In another act of humanity, China sent supplies and medical aid in last night to tend to the growing crisis.