“L’ultima canzone” (The Last Song) is a chamber song composed by Tosti in 1905. It is one of the most famous and performed Italian classical songs, where text and melody wonderfully melt together. I must say I really enjoyed to dive into this ever-green romantic serenade!
Since this piece does not belong to an opera and it is a stand-alone song, many voice types performed it, especially tenors, but also baritones and basses, each one in their own tonality of course.
I recently had the opportunity to sing this song several times in a series of concerts in Sweden and I felt like recording it. I must say I couldn’t help thinking how Ottavio Garaventa, one of my teachers, used to sing this piece so beautifully. Maybe I got inspired by his artistry
The fine piano playing is by Elena Jordan.
YouTube link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JN45GayFlBE
SoundCloud link: https://soundcloud.com/stefano-olcese/tosti-ultima-canzone-stefano-olcese-bass
They told me that tomorrow,
Nina, you will be a bride.
Yet still I sing my serenade to you!
Over there, on the deserted plateau,
There, in the shady valley,
Oh, how often I have sung it to you!
Oh rose leaf,
Oh amaranth flower,
Though you marry,
I shall be always near you!
Tomorrow you’ll be surrounded
By celebration, smiles and flowers,
And you will not spare a thought for your past loves.
Yet always, by day and by night,
Full of passionate moan
My song will sigh to you.
O mint leaf,
O pomegranate flower,
the kisses I gave you!
Original Italian text:
M’han detto che domani
Nina vi fate sposa,
Ed io vi canto ancor la serenata.
Là nei deserti piani
Là, nella valle ombrosa,
Oh quante volte a voi l’ho ricantata!
Foglia di rosa
O fiore d’amaranto
Se ti fai sposa
Io ti sto sempre accanto.
Domani avrete intorno
Feste sorrisi e fiori
Né penserete ai nostri vecchi amori.
Ma sempre notte e giorno
Piena di passione
Verrà gemendo a voi la mia canzone.
Foglia di menta
O fiore di granato,
I baci che t’ho dato!
– Recorded at Gulan (Malmö, Sweden), in June 2021 –