Il Silenzio (song)

Il Silenzio (The Silence) is an instrumental piece, with a small spoken Italian lyric, notable for its trumpet theme. It was written in 1965 (see "Origin" below) by trumpet player Nini Rosso,[1] its thematic melody being an extension of the same Italian Cavalry bugle call used by the Russian composer Tchaikovsky to open his Capriccio Italien (often mistaken for the U.S. military bugle call "Taps"). It has become a worldwide instrumental standard that has sold around 10 million copies.[2] It was a number one hit in Italy, Germany, Austria, and Switzerland, and sold over five million copies by the end of 1967. Rosso was awarded a gold disc.[3] On 9 January 1965 it reached the Number 2 position in Australia and stayed in the charts for 19 weeks, and in the United Kingdom it peaked at number 8 on the Record Retailer singles chart. In the United States it reached #32 in the Billboard Easy Listening Charts. In Canada, the song reached #24 in the RPM Adult Contemporary charts.[4]

"Il Silenzio"
Rosso ilsilenzio.jpg
German single cover
Instrumental by Nini Rosso
English titleThe Silence
Songwriter(s)Nini Rosso
Music of Italy
General topics
Media and performance
Music awards
Music charts
Music festivals
Music mediaMusic media in Italy
Nationalistic and patriotic songs
National anthem"Il Canto degli Italiani"
Regional music

Spoken lyricsEdit

Il Silenzio contains the following spoken lines:

Buona notte, amore
Ti vedrò nei miei sogni
Buona notte a te che sei lontano.
Good night, love
I'll see you in my dreams
Good night to you who are far away.


"Il Silenzio" is a memorial piece commissioned by the Dutch and first played in 1965 on the 20th anniversary of the liberation of the Netherlands.[5]


The song is the official club anthem of the Slovak football club FC Spartak Trnava.[6] It is played before every home match.[citation needed]

Part of the song is also used in all the Italian barracks, to signal the end of the day.[7] It has the same use in the Hellenic Army.

The song is also very often played at funerals in Poland

Cover versionsEdit

Famous cover versions are by Dalida (who performed this song in French, Italian and German), Eddie Calvert, Roy Black, Paul Mauriat, Marijan Domić,[8] and Melissa Venema.

The German trumpeter Roy Etzel's version of the song, without lyrics, was also popular in the US and reached place 140 in the Billboard 200 on Christmas 1965.

A Māori version, with words by George Tait, titled "The Bridge", was released by New Zealand entertainer Deane Waretini and topped the New Zealand singles charts in 1981.[9][10]

Al Hirt released a version of the song as a single in 1965 that reached #19 on the adult contemporary chart and #96 on the Billboard Hot 100.[11]

In 2008 the soloist was a 13-year-old Dutch girl, Melissa Venema, backed by André Rieu and the Royal Orchestra of the Netherlands.[12]

It was released by The London Swing Orchestra in 2015 as the final track of their fourth album and features the trumpet of Michael Lovatt who is now lead trumpet with The John Watson Orchestra and the BBC Big Band. Upbeat Records URCD266.

The Dutch hit trumpeter Ryan Ricks (Rik Mol) has recorded Il Silenzio in 2018 for his album 'C'est La Vie' released by Universal Music Group CD20186.


  1. ^ Joseph Murrells The Book of Golden Discs, Barrie & Jenkins, 1978. ISBN 0-214-20480-4. p 196
  2. ^ Gino Castaldo (editor), Il Dizionario della canzone italiana, 2 vols. Armando Curcio, 1990.
  3. ^ Murrells, Joseph (1978). The Book of Golden Discs (2nd ed.). London: Barrie and Jenkins Ltd. pp. 195–196. ISBN 0-214-20512-6.
  4. ^ "RPM Top 25 AC - January 24, 1966" (PDF).
  5. ^ Tocquigny, Rick (2015). Life Lessons from Veterans. Rowman & Littlefield. p. 125. ISBN 978-1-63076-136-3.
  6. ^ Info FC Spartak Trnava at the Wayback Machine (archived May 29, 2009). (in Slovak) Archived from the original on 2011-08-12.
  7. ^ The official site of the Italian army Archived May 13, 2013, at the Wayback Machine
  8. ^ Šegrt, Miloš (2011-05-24) "Jedna Pesma – Jedna Priča (Il Silenzio)". (in Serbian) Retrieved 2011-08-12.
  9. ^ New Zealand Herald, 25 July 2015 Songs that took Te Reo into the Pop Charts, Deane Waretini - The Bridge
  10. ^ – New Zealand charts portal
  11. ^ "The Silence (Il Silenzio)" Chart Positions Retrieved July 12, 2014
  12. ^ "Melissa bij André Rieu en zijn Johann Strauss-orkest" (in Dutch). De Zaankanter. 2008-03-19. Archived from the original on 2013-02-22. Retrieved 30 May 2011.