Italian culture and history: Italy of Festivals

May 01, 2015 1098

WTI Magazine #59    2015 May, 1
Author :      Translation by:

From north to south, Italy boasts festivals all over the Peninsula, beginning with the Sudtirol Jazz Festival in the northernmost region of Alto Adige. This musical event in the South Tyrol is marking its 30th season this year, and will feature artists of international fame. Traveling just a bit futher south, to the territory of Padua, Piazzola sul Brenta to be precise, the Hydrogen Festival is held at the excellent Camerini amphitheatre.

In the Langhe zone of Piedmont, Collisions is the festival of choice and, in Liguria, the Goa-Boa Festival has run a great Italian and international mix of niche and more popular music (e.g. Morrissey) since 1998.

The Ariston Theatre of Sanremo hosts a concert series called Canzone d'Autore - Premio Tenco, a by-now historical event for the "City of Flowers," dedicated to Luigi Tenco.

Emilia Romagna is also a region of several big festivals. From Emilia Romagna Festival, which takes place in almost every province, with concerts to please a range of tastes; to the 13-year-old I-Day Festival organized in Bologna's Arena Parco Nord, which is attended by alternative, punk, rock and and indie lovers; and not to be forgotten is Ferrara Sotto le Stelle (Ferrara under the Stars), the most important pop music event in the city, and one of the most important festivals in Italy. Ferrara - Castello EstenseThen, moving toward the center of the country, one can happen upon the Rossini Opera Festival, held every August in Pesaro, Gioachino Rossini's birth city.

In Tuscany, Lucca and its surrounding territories boast two important and distinct dates: the Lucca Summer Festival, set in the lovely Piazza Napoleone, has turned Lucca into a capital of both Italian and International music; and the Puccini Festival, dedicated to composer Giacomo Puccini and Torre del Lago - where he lived for more than 30 years – is the oldest festival for opera in all of the Peninsula.

After Tuscany, Umbria is up, with Umbria Jazz. In the heart of Italy, it has attracted famous names from a variety of genres since 1973; very beloved is its winter edition, Umbria Jazz Winter, which sees Orvieto's streets filled with visitors and music lovers from December to January each season. The Festival dei Due Mondi in Spoleto is even more of a draw for musicians and guests from all over the world. So many exciting events take place in the Umbrian region that the list goes on, including in Gubbio. The Gubbio Summer Festival, where celebrated artists meet and share the new keys and chords from the international musical stage, has run for over 20 years now.

Lazio, like Umbria, offers a wide range of choice, which includes the Tuscia Operafestival in Viterbo, boasting the fantastic scenery of Piazza San Lorenzo and the Papal Palace. At the same time, the south has the Ravello Festival to claim; Ravello, a gem of a city on the Amalfi Coast, enriches the Campanian region's cultural scene with its annual Wagnerian Concert and its Concert at dawn. Roccella Jonica in Calabria is another among the more significant Jazz festivals, the Roccella Jazz Festival and its programme chock-full of internationally-acclaimed artists.

Bari's Petruzzelli Theatre is the esteemed location of Festival Bari in Jazz, pleasing audiences with big names and excellent music from the International jazz world.

Meanwhile, Sicily is the home of the Blues & Wine Soul Festival, a fabulous "eno-musical" occasion; held in Agrigento, it has turned into the biggest event of its kind globally, and is highly-noted for displaying the best in Blues, Soul and Gospel entertainment in one setting.

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