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Wedding in Tuscany

wedding near FlorenceThe day before my departure for Puglia I attended the wedding of a very close friend of mine, Claudia. She chose a very traditional italian wedding, in the church and afterwards a dinner with family and friends in a very stunning manor in the Valdarno area. The building was a very ancient castle where, it is believed, even Napoleon slept there!

The dinner with round tables were set in the courtyard around a faboulus well. Instead the newly weds were seated in a small table overlooking the others. It was a very romantic scene.
I was seated together with other girlfriends in the "fucsia table". Not very far from the courtyard there was an italian garden with a labyrinth where the photographer snapped some photos of the bride (the groom does not love this kind of things...).
My friend was really moved but also very radiant. After the dinner they danced together and the groom sang a love song for her.
While I am writing this post they are honeymooning somewhere in the Mediterranean. I would like to wish her all the luck, joy and happiness and I am wondering when will I get married? But I am also thinking about why so many people come to get married in Tuscany; it is so full of lovely places to tie the knot!


Tuscan museum open in the evening during August

18 Tuscan museum open their doors the entire month of August.
During the month of August, eighteen Tuscan museum will stay open during the evening. “Refresh your mind” is the name of the initiative in collaboration with the Regione Toscana. This is dedicated to a public who generally don’t visit museum and to tourists, elderly people, families who stay at home during the month of August. This is certainly a unique way to mix culture, well being and fun. These eighteen museums have been chosen based on a similar characteristic: good environment such as green areas, cool places and a good air conditioning system.

Florence: The museum of children in palazzo Vecchio, Innocenti museum, Strozzi palace, Stibbert museum and museum Horne.
Pistoia: Santa Barbara fortress; in Monsummano Terme, the city museum and the modern art museum.
Lucca: in Viareggio, the naval museum, Villa paolina and the modern art gallery
Siena: Santa maria della scala, in Chianciano, the archeological museum
Arezzo: in Cortona, the MAEC
Grosseto: in Vetulonia, the etruscan museum
Massa cararra: in Villafranca, the Lunigiana gerographical museum
Pisa: in Calci, the natual history museum
Prato the fabric museum

All very different but very cool. Three evenings, for example, will light up piazza SS Annunziata in Florence where there is the possibility to discover the Hospital of the Innocenti followed up by a taste of a home made ice cream: if the adults will enter historical courtyards the children will have the possibility to enter creativity labs. “The Renaissance al fresco” offers to hear the true story of Buontalenti, famous because he created hand made ice cream for the Granduchy court.

Instead in Pistoia, adults and children will visit a hidden jewel of this city, the Santa Barbara fortress where they can taste also some local delicatessen and drinks. Few kilometres after Pistoia there is a charming little town, Monsummano Terme where you can meet with Olympics athletes of the past or simply looking at the stars, with the sound of jazz and piano music.
Then in Viareggio in Villa Paolini, you will be in the 5000 BC where you will do yourself jewels and working the terracotta, then water and natural drinks will refresh your night!
Then again at the Stibbert Museum in Florence, natural and organic drinks will be the protagonists with ice cream …
And at least in Prato in the fabric museum you will see two exhibitions: the evolution of fabrics used in sports and ethnic collections. All of this is possible because of a new air conditioning system which will help the visitors in these particular hot days.

see also the post regarding Florence museums opening till late.


Florence museums: summer evening opening

From 1 July to 30 September 2008 the Uffizi Gallery and the Accademia Gallery will extend the current opening hours up to 22.00 on Tuesdays and Wednesdays.
On 1 August 2008 from 8.30 to 9.30 and from 18.00 to 19.00, following a meeting of the personnel, the Accademia Gallery, the Museum of San Marco, the Museum of the Medici Chapels, the Cenacolo of Sant'Apollonia and the Cloister of the Scalzo, may be closed.
Closed Monday, New Year’s Day, May 1st, Christmas Day.


Back from the south of Italy

My holiday week has finished. Yesterday I have come back from the South of Italy, exactly from Apulia.
It's the Region at the edge of the South East of Italy. It takes 8-9 hours to get there by car from Florence, but it's absolutely worth of it. My destination was Salento: the area at the end of Apulia.
Here in the picture you can see Gallipoli.
See on Google Maps.

The sea is as enchanting as the Caribbean sea, the food is excellent and people are friendly and welcoming. The charming landscape together with the variety of things to do, to see and to admire makes this place lovely.
I have been to:

- Ostuni, the "white city".

- Gallipoli on the Ionian sea. The meaning of the name - coming from ancient greek - "callis polis" means beautiful city. To walk in the narrow streets is relaxing and takes you back to the 50s when people in Italy used to seat in the street with kids and talk, laugh and smile to tourists.

- Lecce. The city is famous for its Baroque architecture.

I have swimmed in a pure cristalline water, I have eaten fish and mussels. And some typical food such as "frise" (you can see them in this picture): little pieces of bread with tomatoes and olives).

I have spent days relaxing and sunbathing on delightful beaches.

I really recommend you to spend some days there. It's not expensive and there is still a slow and peaceful rhythm of life.


See you soon!

I'll be away from the blog for 1 week.
I've already written about some events in Tuscany in the next days so you will not miss my posts.
I'll be back soon!

Mercantia: festival in Certaldo

Yesterday evening I went with some friends to Certaldo, a medieval village few miles outside Florence. Every year, during the month of July, they have a festival called MERCANTIA, where people coming from all over Europe invade the medieval streets of Certaldo with dancing, light and fire games, music and theatre. It was the first time for me.
Certaldo is a very charming town and in this occasion it opens every single courtyard, door, palaces, gardens and it is very worthy to come here and spend sometimes but the festival itself didn’t make me crazy. Maybe it is not the kind of event I was expected. I thought more about a medieval festival but it is like "Pelago on the road" (another village outside Florence) with musicians, street artists, puppeteer…

There are valid artists such as some puppeteers but also a lot of people that are there only to make some noises. Altogether the atmosphere is vibrant, lively with music, colours and special effects and in every corner you can find the most variegated humanity.

I liked the main streets full of colours, with a lot of artists playing instruments, there were also people dressed with incredible costumes as well and the best part of it, which I liked a lot, was the Palazzo Pretorio. We have seen some interesting shows in its courtyard. The market along the wall is nice too even I wouldn’t buy a single piece. I think also that a lot of people like this chaos, it was so crowded!
A now few notes about the people: two nice and skinny girls asked us where the cemetery was to put their tent (!), a very happy couple kissing each other completely careless of the chasm behind them (…), a young Rasta mummy who breast feed her child, a fat fakir who played with fire, broken glasses and snakes…people everywhere with objects, instruments, flags who tried to do something and raise some money.
The ticket is not cheap: Thursday at € 7,50, Saturday/Sunday € 15,00, considering that if you go up there you eat something, a glass of wine…well maybe it is worthy to go only once in a lifetime.


Le murate, restaurant in Florence

Here we are with another review. Le Murate is in Via del Proconsolo and this is one of the most charming and best restaurant of Florence.
The restaurant is in the interior of a palace; the palace once owned by the Lawyer and Notary art of the ancient Florentine Republic; this a museum if we think about the numerous paintings on the ceilings and lunettes hanged on the walls. They can say, with pride, that on a mezzanine floor they found “The real Dante’s face” that they show the customers with the help of an audio guide.
We did not take any antipasti (appetizers) and we started with a Pasta Carbonara, revised with Colonnata lard cut in thin slides, very good. Then, we had tortelli with arugula and robiola, very tasty and delicate, too. As a second dish we had galletto (chicken) with ham and fig, delicious and a lamb leg, tasty as well.
Desserts are of a good quality like the menu: chocolate cake, meringue with lemon. All great wines are available.
The service is refined and punctual, the place is very beautiful and they have the great capability to mix modern with antique.
Prices are: tasting menu at € 90,00 (without wines), First dishes € 25, second € 35-40.

Alle murate – Gastronomia delle regioni
Palazzo dell’Arte dei Giudici e dei Notai
Via del Proconsolo 6/red – 50122 Firenze
Te. 055 240618

Summer events: August in Tuscany

siena piazza del campo
In Florence in August there's not a lot of things to do... you have to move to other cities.

In Siena from 23rd to 26th August: the festival The Aromatic City, the concert show, conducted by Mauro Pagani, which joins rock, ethnic, jazz music and dancing and wants to make Siena known even for the richness and the variety of the cultural appointments which take place in the city. During the 4 days of the festival the young Senese artists and the dancing companies will perform, together with the big names of international music, who, on Thursday, 23rd August, in the splendid scenario of the medieval Fonts of Fontebranda, will open the event with choreographies of an African inspiration.
On 24th July, Piazza del Campo (admire here in the picture the "Torre del mangia") will be a stage for a free big concert of contemporary jazz.
On the 16th of August in Siena: the Palio.

In Cortona the Tuscan Sun Festival

In San Gimignano: concerts, dancing, theater. Italian live music during the month, and the "Finley" (August, 28). Classic music on the 29th of July. In the Duomo square the "opera" with “Carmen” (August, 5 and 8, at 9,15 pm) and “Il Barbiere di Siviglia” (August, 6 at 9,15pm).

Near Livorno, on the tuscan coast: Surf music and dance.

In Mugello: from 27th to the 31st of August the first edition of Mugello Dance Festival, 4 days od house and electronic music, with the singer Skin as a dj.

In the Val d'Orcia (south of Siena, a charming valley you must see!): the Valdorcia festival, from 1 to 23 theater and music. Concerts, shows and many interesting stuff.
I recommend:
- monday, the 11th, pianist Roberto Cacciapaglia will play classic music in piazza San Pietro in the heart of Radicofani, under the Rocca di Ghino di Tacco.
- friday, the 15th, Naat Veliov e The Original Kocani Orkestar will play immersed in the hot water of Bagno Vignoni spa.


Summer events in Tuscany: surf music on the Tuscan coast

The SurferJoe Summer Festival 2008

The festival was born in 2003 as the very first European event completely dedicated to surf music. With a load of great bands passed on the stage, they repeated it in 2004. Now the time for the 3rd edition has come: welcome to the Surfer Joe Summer Festival 2008. Two days of incredible surf music and fun the 16th and 17th August 08 in Livorno!

Location: CALAFURIA S.S. Aurelia, Loc. Romito, Livorno (Tuscan coast)

16.30 The Surfadelics
17:45 Jaguar & The Savanas
19:30 The Crashmen
21:00 The Charades
22:15 The Vibrants
23:30 Wadadli Riders & Daddy-O Grande

17:00 I Surfoniani
18:15 The Wavers
19:30 The Wet-Tones
21:00 The Sunny Boys
22:30 The Barbwires
23:30 The Bitch Boys DJ SETS

16:00 Favolosi Traslatori
Great garage/psychedelic show 20:30 Sexual Chocolate
Be ready for superb blues/rock SIDE STAGE SUNDAY
18:00 I Rifflessi
The Italian face of 60s surf beat
22:00 Gli Ambaciatori dell'Amore
Fantastic beat from the fabulous 60s

For musicians: join us for the SURF JAM SESSION, get on stage and play!
All the instruments are already here, open mic, you are more than welcome.

16,17 August 2008
Livorno, Tuscany, Italy


Florence Summer sales start today july 12

In Italy every Region has a different rule for the beginning of the sales. In Florence, Tuscany sales start on July, 12. You can buy italian leather goods near Santa Croce. You can find lovely fashion bags and accessories by Gucci, Hugo Boss, Louis Vitton, Armani with a discount price close to Piazza Repubblica.
Some stores have started their Summer Sale 2008 since last Saturday, but a huge range of items will be reduced by up to 50 per cent in these days.
In Italy, even if you can see the prices on the labels, you can always try to negotiate asking "What discount can I get?" or "What can you do about the price?" (in italian you could say: "un piccolo sconticino extra?")
At Rinascente, in the store’s excellent fashion department, not far from Ponte Vecchio, you will find cutting prices on a phenomenal range of goods by up to 60 per cent.
In italian sales are known as "saldi". So watch out for the signal "saldi" or "sconti" on the windows of the stores and get discounts of up to 60 per cent.


Impressionist's exhibition in Florence

impressionists in florence exhibitionInside the monumental 'Palazzo Strozzi' in the heart of Florence, next to 'Piazza della Repubblica', there will be an Impressionist's temporary exhibition from July 11th to September 28th, 2008.
How did the Impressionists paint?
"Painting Light" is not just another Impressionist exhibition: it examines some of the most famous canvases of the last century, looking for clues as to where the paintings were made, under what conditions and, in some cases, by whom. The exhibition brings together over 60 masterpieces by Van Gogh, Signac, Sisley, Berthe Morisot and Renoir and others from the Wallraf-Richartz Museum Foundation Corboud, Cologne, and other museums.

The Impressionists were not only pioneers in style, they were first and foremost innovators in technique. This interactive exhibition invites the visitor to look at the paintings using modern technology – with high-power microscopes, under infra-red and ultra-violet light – in order to discover the secrets of the Impressionist and Post-Impressionist artists.

It explores such as aspects as how the artists conveyed the quality of light at different times of the day and which conditions inspired them the most, what materials and work methods they used, where the painting was done (for example one painting even has sand in the paint confirming it was executed en plein air while others recreated outdoor scenes in the shelter of their Paris studios) as well as the history of the paintings.

There are only 8 rooms: it may take 1 hour to see all the exhibition.

A book shop and a little coffe bar are available for the show.

Opening hours:
Daily 9 a.m - 8 p.m
Thursday 9 a.m - 11 p.m
Last admission to the exhibition 1 hour before closing

Handicapped access with elevator.

Full € 10,00
Reduced € 8,50 € 8,00 € 7,50
Schools € 4,00

See on Google maps Palazzo Strozzi >>


Robert Redford at Tuscan Sun Festival

Hollywood icon Robert Redford joins the roster of distinguished artists appearing at the Tuscan Sun Festival.
Redford to Join August 8th Evening of Poetry Reading, accompanied by Piano Improvisations

Hollywood legend Robert Redford joins the illustrious list of artists performing at the 2008 Tuscan Sun Festival in Cortona, Italy, August 2nd 10th. As a last minute addition to the previously announced performances, Redford participates in the August 8th concert by reading poetry, accompanied by the piano improvisations of esteemed Italian conductor and pianist, Nicola Luisotti. The first half of the August 8th programme, which will take place in the intimate setting of Teatro Signorelli in the heart of Cortona, will also feature poetry, recited by one of Italy's leading lights of stage and screen, Gabriele Lavia.

2008 Tuscan Sun Festival Programme

Saturday, August 02
12:00 Opening of The Shape of Colour, an exhibition of paintings by Sibylle Szaggars
12:00-14:00 Cooking with Mamma Donatella
16:30 Opening of Art Exhibition Le Forme del Bello/The Shape of Beauty
21:00 Stars of the Bolshoi Ballet

Sunday, August 03
11:00-12:00 Dr. Weishe Song's Lecture on Wellness
20:00-20:45 Toasting Tuscany
21:00 Danielle de Niese, Vito Priante, Andrea Marcon, Venice Baroque

Monday, August 04
09:00-10:00 Tai Chi-Chuan with Lucia Dalbon
10:00-12:00 Fresco Workshop with Julia Perry
12:00 Cooking with Mamma Donatella
20:00-20:45 Toasting Tuscany
21:00 Recital with Jos Cura, Speranza Scappucci

Tuesday, August 05
09:00 Tai Chi-Chuan with Lucia Dalbon
10:30-12:00 Cheese Making Workshop with Romano Magi of Ristorante La Bucaccia
11:00 Dr. Weishe Songs Lecture on Wellness
20:00-20:45 Toasting Tuscany
21:00 Pinchas Zukerman, Gabriela Montero, Antonio Pappano, UBS Verbier
Festival Chamber Orchestra

Wednesday, August 06
09:00 Tai Chi-Chuan with Lucia Dalbon
10:00 Fresco Workshop with Julia Perry
12:00 Cooking with Mamma Donatella
20:00-20:45 Toasting Tuscany
21:00 Chamber Music with the Zukerman Chamber Players

Thursday, August 07
09:00 Tai Chi-Chuan with Lucia Dalbon
11:00 Dr. Weishe Songs lecture on Wellness
20:00-20:45 Toasting Tuscany
21:00 Ana Maria Martinez, Jos Cura, Mario De Rose, UBS Verbier Festival
Chamber Orchestra

Friday, August 08
09:00 Tai Chi-Chuan with Lucia Dalbon
12:00 Cooking with Mamma Donatella
20:00-20:45 Toasting Tuscany
21:00 An Evening of Poetry with Gabriele Lavia, Nicola Luisotti and Robert Redford.

Saturday, August 09
11:00 Dr. Weishe Songs Lecture on Wellness
13:00-15:00 Diego Zancanis Presents a Renaissance Banquet
20:00-20:45 Toasting Tuscany
21:00 Joshua Bell, Natasha Paremski, Orchestra da Camera di Mantova

Sunday, August 10
12:00 Cooking with Mamma Donatella
15:00-16:00 Diego Zancanis Lecture on the History of Italian Food
20:00-20:45 Toasting Tuscany
21:00 Piotr Anderszewski, Joshua Bell, Stephane Denve, UBS Verbier
Festival Chamber Orchestra

For more info>>

Continue following my florentine blog (here the italian version) to discover hottest summer events in Tuscany, such as Montalcino Jazz and Wine festival


July 9-20 Montalcino jazz and wine festival 2008 comes back!

Some of the most important interpreter of the Italian and international jazz scene will meet in the XIV century fortress of this medieval hilltop town in Tuscany.
The audience can listen to these artists tasting the prestigious wine, the Brunello of Montalcino.

Wednesday July 9th
Luca Velotti Sax, clarinet player and composer comes back to Montalcino with his band the Jazz Ensemble. Velotti is a young talent known because of his attentive language of swing, mainstream revised with modern sensibility.

Thursday, July 10 BASS INSTINCT
Bass instinct was born to approach the different sounds of bass guitar. The repertoire is composed entirely by original and different composition as the three bass guitarists come from different back grounds such as funk, be-bop, Latin music and north European jazz.

Friday, July 11 Enrico Rava generations
Enrico Rava, trumpet. Enrico Rava is the most famous and internationally known Italian jazz player

Saturday, July 12 The Yellow Jackets featuring Mike Stern
Mike Stern: Guitar player. The Jellow Jackets comes back to Moltalcino. They have been on the international jazz scene for about 25 years now and they still propose a very ad-libbed jazz. Guest star is Mike Stern, a very famous American guitar player with 3 Grammy awards nominee: his music goes from modern to jazz and fusion.

Thursday July17 Chicago Jazz Ensemble
The most celebrated jazz orchestra is composed by 21 elements. The Ensemble is made with famous and well known jazz players but also by some young players full of genius and talent.

Friday, July 18 Ronnie Cuber Band
Ronnie Cuber was born in Brooklyn, NY on December 25, 1941 and he composed, arranged music with his band since 1959. He is known as the biggest sax-baritone, a fresh mix of jazz, hard bop, soul, R&B and Latin music

Saturday, July 19 SHAWN MONTEIRO
Shawn delighted his public in the US and in Europe her pop jazz mixed with blues. She is not only a valid Jazz Players who worked with big names such as Clark terry, Lionel Hampton and Ray Brown but she teaches also at the Hartt School/Jackie Mclean Institute of jazz in Hartford, CT but also at the Rhode Island College in providence, RI

Sunday, July 20 Stefano Bollani Carioca
Stefano Bollani: Piano man. What is carioca? It is a new music journey that this acclaimed piano player decided to take form Samba and Choro; the real leitmotif of Rio de Janeiro. The project has been edited by a famous journalist and expert Alberto Riva for the Universal Italy Music.

Concerts begin at 9,30 pm
Place: Montalcino Fortress
for info: 0577 849331


Swimming and shopping inTuscany, near Barberino

A Saturday at Bilancino lake: Bagno Maria
As an alternative to the sea and the beach a friend of mine, Ylenia, asked me to go with her to the lake of Bilancino which is quite near Barberino del Mugello.
Few years ago I went to the Bahia, this time, we opted for another side of the lake and we tried the famous Bagno Maria, and in fact it is nicer than some time ago: they did a very nice beach with little stones and they put this "beach" at the same level of the lake, then they added chairs and umbrellas (200!), tables, the bar, the WC, the sofas and evertyhing for the the rent of canoe and kayak and pedalo. A part of chairs and umbrellas are on the beach and the other part on a very nice green field.
Prices are very honest: 10 euros for 2 chairs and 1 umbrella

The bagno Maria manager is a very funny man with an inclination for women and either his son, a very funny and easy athmosphere...snobism does not live there.

But the most folkloristic character was the life guard: a very nice guy with a perfect body, long rasta grey hair that, between a chair and an umbrella, he played with his little daughter in the water of the lake. A very unusual but very sweet scene to see.

We sat near the shore and the little breeze was very good on us after the hot past week. Sometimes we plunged in the water and it was so good with the little stones and no mud. There were also some fishes swimming around us.
For lunch we went under the patio to eat a very good cold spelt with tuna, swrimps and pesto (€ 6,50, not bad after all) and in the afternoon we tried also the pedalo. It was so strange being in the middle of the lake that you could hear the very loud music from the Bahia!

Bagno Maria is more tranquil, for couples, families or simply for friends who want to relax with soft music, like I did. I took my little nap under the sun and infact I was burning at my awake!
I think that it could be nice for the entire area if more café or bath areas born on the lake: some of them are for a more informal, loud young people target, others are more easy going and relaxing. I am always happy to find out valid alternatives to the sea.
And after the sunset...we went on searching the famous tortelli made in Mugello, of course!

This beach is very close to the famous Barberino Outlet: read how to get to Florence Outlet in Barberino for buying Prada, D&G, Guess, Calvin Klein, Pinko. It takes 10 minutes from the lake!


Corri la vita marathon

“The Run to Beat Breast Cancer” Piazza S. Croce, Florence, Italy
Sunday September 28, 2008 at 9:30 a.m.

The next appointment for CORRI LA VITA is Sunday September 28, at 9:30 a.m.
This very popular walkathon/marathon in Florence is open to all. It was created as an opportunity to mix sport and social conscience, with the goal of collecting funds for the fight against breast cancer. CORRI LA VITA is first and foremost, a wonderful event that will involve the city of Florence and all of Tuscany. All are invited to participate: from the most serious athletes to the most sedentary, children, adults, young, and old, individuals, whole families, groups, colleagues and friends…everyone is welcome.
Participating means you will have the chance to add your contribution towards the fight against cancer. Both professional and amateur athletes will choose to run or walk in either the 10.5 km or 5.1 km courses. The competitive run (10.5km) is for both professional and non-professional participants.

Piazza Santa Croce is the starting point, and from there the course will proceed through the surrounding hills of Florence to touch Piazzale Michelangelo then head back down to the banks of the river Arno and on to Santa Croce. Along the way, at special points of interest, certain museums, historic homes and private gardens will be opened especially for CORRI LA VITA participants. A total of 42,000 participants in the 5 past editions of CORRI LA VITA have raised over 1,000,000 Euro.

“From the very first edition CORRI LA VITA was to be a point of reference for the national health system of Tuscany as solid support for women in their personal fight against breast cancer, using all the most advance technological and psychological assistance available” declared the President of the organization committee Marchesa Bona Frescobaldi.

The Aim:
- To assist the centre for rehabilitation called Ce.Ri.On.
- Assist in financing the department of oncology at Villa Le Rose (at the annual cost of 250,000 Euro) and also the department of rehabilitation (both physically and psychologically) for all breast cancer patients. It is thanks to the help of CORRI LA VITA that 2 years ago Villa le Rose was inaugurated specifically for this purpose, to help all breast cancer victims.
- To participate in buying a digital mammograph for the diagnostics department for breast cancer for the main learning hospital of Florence called Ospedale di Careggi
- To help FILE (Italian Lenitive Foundation) finance a full time nurse to assist the lenitic doctor at the oncology department of the day hospital at Santa Maria Nuova

The Participants:
The first 12,000 participants will receive a complimentary gift bag, plus a T-shirt styled and donated by the famous Florentine Fashion House Salvatore Ferragamo, the main sponsor of CORRI LA VITA. “This event creates a dynamic and positive impact on the Florentines. To participate is an honour not an obligation” said Mr. Ferruccio Ferragamo, CEO of Salvatore Ferragamo SpA

To participate:
Everyone must register and pay an entry fee of 10 Euro. Registration will commence September 1st and maybe done at the following locations: FIRENZE MARATHON – Viale M. Fanti, 2 tel. 0555522957 e.mail info@firenzemarathon.it
For more information on how to enrol, please go to our web site www.corrilavita.it


Siviero museum: performance and dinner for free

Saturday 5 July. Nights of Archeology

9.00 pm: Virgil's Aeneid; performance of Gian Luigi Tosto
10.00 -12.00 pm: Special opening of the museum
Free entrance from 8.45 pm
The garden of Casa Siviero cannot keep more than 100 people. The gate will be closed when the garden will be complete. Anyway the entrance will not be allowed during the performance.

The dinner and the performance are free of charge.

Rodolfo Siviero retrieved many archeological masterpieces (such as the Lancellotti Discobolus, several statues of the Archeological Museum of Naples, the mosaics of Junius Bassus's Mithraic temple, the Ephebus of Selinunte) which had been stolen from Italy. Siviero's love for archeology is also demonstrated by the bust-portraits, the sculptures, the pottery and metal Etruscan and Roman findings which are conserved in his home-museum. Due to this reason, although Casa Siviero is not a true archeological museum, it participates at the programme of promotion of the Tuscan archeological heritage 'Le Notti dell'Archeologia' (Nights of Archeology). In the garden of Siviero's home-museum one can attend a performance in which Gianluigi Tosto interprets passages of Virgil's Aeneid, with a particular focus on the Etruscans' role in the mithical origin of Rome.

The museum is located at the ground floor of the fine Neo-Renaissance building on the banks of the river Arno, Florence, where Rodolfo Siviero lived from 1944 until his death in 1983.
A keen collector and refined intellectual, Siviero managed to collect many works of Ancient art among which Etruscan findings; Ancient Roman busts; 14th and 15th century wooden statues; Medieval paintings on gold backgrounds, Renaissance and Baroque pictures, bronzes, terra-cottas, liturgical objects, beautiful furniture.

Furthermore, a group of works of important Italian modern artists.

This patrimony perfectly reflects the personality of its owner who loved art so deeply and it has the same kind of charm you can find in the palaces full of magnificent art collections Florence inherited from Bardini, Horne and Stibbert. The House-museum is a document of the taste and way of life of the educated XX century Florentine middle-class and it gives the possibility of visiting the private treasures of a 'James Bond' of art.


The museum also hosts exhibitions and other cultural events, the actualization of which is entrusted by Regione Toscana to the Associazione Amici dei Musei Fiorentini.

Entry free of charge

Nuit blanche in Florence

Tonight there will be another "Nuit blanche" (white night) in Florence, in the Gavinana area: from 7.30 pm to midnight many free events in the streets.
Stores open till late, live music at Anconella Park (see on google maps) and in Viale Europa (see on google maps), biking tour from 8 pm at Piazza Elia dalla Costa (see on google maps), dance show at Caffè Giannotti, tasting at Piazza Ferrucci, concerts, volley ball matches, theater and a incredible dinner with T-bone steak at Midnight in Viale Europa.
"Notte bianca a Gavinana"
Where: Florence, Italy
When: from 7.30 pm to 1.00 am


Vintage clothing show florence

vintage clothes and fair in italyToday starts Vintage Selection: the vintage fair at Stazione Leopolda, Florence, Italy.
From 10 am to 10 pm a fashion show for vintage lovers: clothes, accessories, bags, shoes and other stuff. The theme of Vintage selection 2008 is the world of music and dance. "You Ginger, Me Fred" will be the backdrop for clothing, accessories and objects tied to our musical memories, from classic to modern, from the Swing of the forties to the Rock of the sixties, from the Charleston in the twenties to disco-dance in the eighties. Special focus will be on today's names such as Lilly Ann, Biba, Vivienne Westwood and Thierry Mugler.
When: 2-5 July, 2008
Where: Stazione Leopolda, Viale Fratelli Rosselli, Firenze
Tickets: 5 euro.


Palio di Siena

On the 2nd of July there is one of the World’s most famous horse races: the Palio di Siena.
It's a wonderfully visual (and often brutal) horserace around the famous Piazza del Campo in the center of Siena.
It is participated by all of the 17 neighborhoods (the "contrade") that make up the city of Siena over the course of 2 different races, one which is held July 2nd (Feast day of the Visitation) and the other on August 15th (Feast day of the Assumption or Palio dell'Assunta).

There are numerous festivities all over Siena leading up to the Palio. 4 days prior to the race, the Piazza del Campo is transformed into the track.
The evening prior to the races is where the real fun begins, where long tables are set up along the streets for huge meals in celebration of the hopeful victory that will follow the next day. The day of the race, a spectacular parade is held where each neighborhood enters the piazza accompanied with trumpets and flag tossers, everyone dressed in traditional medieval garments.

When the time comes for the 90 second, three lap race around the piazza, the crowd goes wild cheering on their neighborhood with pride. The winning neighborhood is presented with a hand-made banner of silk followed by a tremendous celebration for their victory.

How to go from Florence to Siena
By bus: the SITA line from the Central Station Square (1 hour and 15 minutes with the "rapida" course).
By train: on the Firenze-Empoli-Siena (very slow!)
By car: highway Firenze-Siena (south of Florence), one hour drive.

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