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What's on in Florence

You can taste a fresh cucumber at Porta Romana (free tasting) with live music and dance show for Meyer Hospital. On thursday, the 28th.
You can deep in the fairly atmosphere of Hobbits and Tolkien creatures at Vallombrosa (great place to find freshness and trees..) on the weekend.
You can admire the panoramic view from Forte Belvedere. Everyday.
You can enjoy knitting at Rifrullo's. On tuesday, the 3rd of July.
You can listen to some jazz music in Piazza dei Ciompi, near Piazza Santa Croce. Everyday.


Museum of Still Life in the Villa of Poggio a Caiano

Portraits of Nature: opening to the public in the Villa Medicea of Poggio a Caiano: the Museum of Still Life with 200 paintings from the collections of the Medici.
Now opening to the public in the Medici Villa of Poggio a Caiano, masterpiece of Renaissance architecture, is the Museum of Still Life (Natura Morta), the only museum of its kind in Italy and Europe.
The entire third floor of the villa, which was constructed for Lorenzo the Magnificent as planned by Giuliano da Sangallo, with wall paintings by Andrea del Sarto, Pontormo and Alessandro Allori, hosts in its 900 square meters of space, presented in chronological order, about 200 still life and “living nature” paintings, gathered from the Medici collections.

These examples of extraordinary beauty tell the story of a great collection put together with passion in the course of a century and a half, from the beginning of the 17th century to the middle of the 18th century. The works by Italian, Flemish and Dutch artists, acquired or commissioned, come together to create the most important existing collection of still life painting in Italy and Europe. Artists include Bartolomeo Bimbi (in the picture), Felice Boselli, Jan Brueghel, Margherita Caffi, Giovanna Garzoni, Nicolas van Houbraken, Bartolomeo Ligozzi, Gaspare Lopez, Mario de’ Fiori, Otto Marseus, Cristoforo Munari, Pietro Navarra, Filippo Napoletano, Giuseppe Recco, Andrea Scacciati, Franz Werner Tamm, and many others.

Most of the 200 paintings on display in the museum will be seen by the public for the first time because until now they have been held in storage by the Polo Museale Fiorentino – above all in the Uffizi and at Palazzo Pitti – where they came to rest after historical events, or in the offices of public buildings throughout Italy.
The choice of the Villa Medicea of Poggio a Caiano as home to the museum is not by chance: the Medici intended their collections of still life to be located in their great country residences, each of which was home to a different “subject”.
At Poggio a Caiano the “great prince” Ferdinando de’ Medici had brought together a large part of his collections; at the Villa Ambrogiana, Cosimo III kept the paintings depicting living animals, especially birds, true and distinctive “portraits”, that “form a theater of nature’s marvels”; Careggi was home to the collection of the “teratologica”, or works depicting exceptional animal or vegetable rarities due to size, exotic origin or certain physical anomalies that made for the monstrous or unique; at Castello the paintings of flowers; and at Casino della Topaia again Cosimo III gave life to the exceptional comparison between Nature and Art, growing on the surrounding lands “all the types of fruit, citrus, grapes and flowers that up until now have been found” and collecting for the interior of the villa the large canvases of Bimbi that presented them. This monumental pictorial cycle, masterpiece of Italian botanical still life, has been housed in the villa of Poggio a Caiano since 1990 and now becomes one of the centerpieces of the new museum’s collection.

In the 16 rooms of the museum there will also be on display works belonging to the various members of the dynasty of the Grand Duchy of Tuscany who in the course of four generations put together this extraordinary and unique collection. The major players of this great adventure were: Cosimo II de’ Medici (1590-1621) with his wife Maria Maddalena of Austria and his brothers Don Lorenzo and cardinal Carlo; his succesor, the Grand Duke Ferdinando II (1610-1670), his wife Vittoria della Rovere, and his brothers, cardinals Leopoldo and Giovan Carlo; and finally, at the time of the maximum expression of still life, the Grand Duke Cosimo III (1642-1723), his brother cardinal Francesco Maria and his children, the “great prince” Ferdinando and Anna Maria Luisa (1667-1743), the last of the dynasty.

Villa Medicea di Poggio a Caiano Piazza de’ Medici Poggio a Caiano (PO)
For more information:
Tourist Office of the City of Poggio a Caiano tel. 055 - 8798779
Office of Culture of the City of Poggio a Caiano tel. 055 – 8701280
Tickets: Museum admission is free

Mese Mediceo: Magnifico!

Yesterday I've been again to the show "Lorenzo il Magnifico", in the "cenacolo del Fuligno" (a little church with Perugino's frescoes). The show belongs to the "Mese Mediceo": an ironic festival devoted to Medici Family. I had seen the show before, but it's still very funny and enjoyable.
The little "theatre" was very crowded. There were several young american ladies laughing and crying for the pictoresque characters on the stage. The show is mainly played without words, therefore everybody can understand the story.
The 2 young actors were gorgeous, expressive, very funny, with a strong ability to play with the body language.
I really appreciated watching the show again!


Pitti Immagine uomo 72

Pitti Immagine events are starting this week: from the 21th of June to the 6th of July many events related to the fashion world will take in Florence, Italy. Tomorrow starts the Pitti Immagine Uomo 72. Here some events in Florence:

DIESEL, SPECIAL GUEST, SPECIAL EVENT AT THIS EDITION Diesel will be the guest of honor in a multi-part event, an innovative fashion project and a big musical party scheduled for the evening of Thursday, 21 June at the former Customs House (ex-Dogana) on Via Valfonda. During the fair, the Dogana will also be the exceptional background for the men’s and women’s clothing and accessory collections with the Diesel signature.

From the biggest names in Italian fashion as well as all the international brands to the new contemporary mix from our new fashion district inside Pitti Uomo's Fortezza da Basso, one passes through and sees all the emerging talent from New Beat(s) and the luxury collections of the Pitti Rooms. The show will also be the laboratory for rethinking the trade-fair concept and projecting it into the future with the project we have launched together with MIT of Boston, Massachusets. But, the importance of Pitti Uomo today goes way beyond men's fashion: confirming this are Diesel (our special event) who has chosen Florence for the spectacular presentation of their Global Lifestyle Brand .... as well as Ermanno Scervino, whose collection will make a spectacular debut on the eve of Pitti Uomo.

Ermanno Scervino is breaking the rules with an absolute innovation: on the eve of Pitti Uomo, that is Tuesday, 19 June the brand will present the 2008 spring summer men’s collection and the women’s pre-collection in a single showing.

Pitti Uomo travels into the land of men’s fashions, redraws the borders and launches new market trends. This edition will open with new road signs for a new route: Futuro Maschile, the section that presents innovative elegance for today’s man is changing locations. At this edition it will be in the Padiglione delle Nazioni and one of the protagonists of the strategic area featuring Touch!, l’Altro Uomo and Ynformal. Together, these four sections of the fair will comprise a true fashion district with over 180 collections showcasing the most modern and eclectic mix for the contemporary wardrobe. The result is a new slant on style offering buyers from the most forward-looking boutiques an innovative perspective on the men’s collections. The layout of the exhibition areas is designed by Oliviero Baldini.
An other major innovation on the Pitti Uomo map concerns the Main Pavilion, the showcase for the big names in men’s elegance; the firms that were in the Sala della Nazioni during previous editions of the fair will now be in the Main Pavilion, and specifically, Hall M on the Lower Level.

Rooms n. 6, the most sophisticated soul of contemporary luxury design will be on stage at the Villa Vittoria, around the corner from the Fortezza da Basso. Limited edition, luxurious and unconventional collections will be the protagonists of an original tour that wends its way through a tropical garden blooming in the rooms of a nineteenth century villa: the title is Living in the Jungle, curated by Sergio Colantuoni.

This is the special area that Pitti Uomo dedicates to emerging designer debuts. In this, its eighth edition, New Beat(s) will be featuring collections by young avant-garde brands from all over the world. Marco Morosini, a creative design talent was given the assignment to prepare the Lyceum to host a concentrate of fashion-oriented forms of expression.

Welcome to my house is the exhibit that interprets the natural evolution of streetwear through a select number of young firms which represent today’s research on street fashions. The settings are by Erica il Cane, one of the newest and most original figures in the Italian artistic underground.

And moreover: Dikkembergs, Guru, Bench, Puma and other fashion brands..


Forte Belvedere is opening again!

After the conference of yesterday morning, the news are official: Forte Belvedere is opening again!
From the 23rd of June to the 31st of August on the hill of this Medicean Fortress there will be several events: music, movies, happy hours, exhibitions, and more over..
Entrance is free.
You can also admire the "fochi di san Giovanni" (fireworks on June, the 24) from there..
I really recommend visiting the Forte during the day (for the beautiful view) or in the sunset (very romantic!).


Jazz and wine in Montalcino, Tuscany

Mike Mainieri & Steps Ahead, Enrico Rava, Roberto Gatto, Javier Girotto and many other big names combine for the Jazz selection that will kick off on July 11

(July 11-22 2007)

With this year’s edition, “Jazz & Wine in Montalcino” celebrates its “first” 10 years of uninterupted play. An important and flattering milestone that underlines the festivals growing success, to both public and critical acclaim for a Jazz festival strongly backed by the Castello Banfi wine estate, in collaboration with the town of Montalcino and the Jazz & Image association of Rome.

To appropriately celebrate the tenth year, some of the principal artists who have played in past editions will return, while other important names, both Italian and international, will take the stage in Montalcino for the first time.

Wednesday July 11 the opening concert takes place within the evocative walls of Castello Banfi, the first notes being entrusted exactly as they were ten years ago to the trombone of Marcello Rosa and his quintet. On July 12 the Festival transfers to the magnificent 14th century fortress of Montalcino with the awaited return of the Roberto Gatto Quartet (with Flavio Boltro on the trumpet), to be followed on July 13 by Jeremy Pelt, one of the most interesting trumpet players of the recent generation and declared a rising star for the last two years in a row by the auhoritative magazine Down Beat. Saturday, July 14, the interesting Ionata/Amato Hammond Quartet takes its turn. The first week closes on July 15 with another return to Montalcino, that of the great saxophonist Maurizio Giammarco and his Megatones.

The music starts playing again on Wednesday, July 18 with the Biseo-Saint Just Quartet, back in the historical courtyard of Castello Banfi. On July 19 the festival makes its final move back to the Fortezza di Montalcino with an extraordinary concert by Mike Mainieri, the living legend of jazz and fusion, and Steps Ahead in the midst of their “30th Anniversary European Tour,” a true gem for jazz aficionados. Friday July 20 marks another great return, after a ten year absence – that of Argentine saxophonist Javier Girotto accompanied by Aires Tango. Saturday July 21 the festival has the pleasure of hosting one of its most ardent supporters and frequent performers, the great Enrico Rava with his project New Generation (featuring Mauro Negri). The festival will close on a high note, Sunday July 22, with one more great return, the extraordinary sax of Rosario Giuliani and his quartet.

Great jazz music and extraordinary wine will meet for the 10th consecutive year in the heart of Brunello country to celebrate, with growing success, the inebriating encounter between two close and intense pleasures.

For more information please contact: banfi@banfi.it
Tel: +39/0577/840111 Fax +39/0577/840471


Nottarno 2007 and San Giovanni

Sunday June, the 23rd, in Florence there will be NOTTARNO "notte bianca in Oltrarno".
Get to know and experience Oltrarno for a night of music, events, performances and markets. From 9pm to 3am.
A chance to stroll along the streets in the neighbourhood, along the left bank of the river Arno.
History and art act as the protagonists along with anyone who want to join in this great "party" when the lights of the craft workshops and stores will illuminate the Oltrarno area all night.

The day after, on 24 June, is "San Giovanni". Florence celebrates the feast of its patron, San Giovanni, with a series of exhibitions that involve the entire city.
On the morning of 24 June, a Historic Parade wends its way from Piazza della Signoria to the Baptistery of the Cathedral with an offering of candles for the patron. A solemn mass follows with the showing of the Saint's relics.
At the conclusion, on the evening of the 24th, there is a traditional fireworks display in Piazzale Michelangelo, called Fuochi di San giovanni, which draws a huge crowd, especially concentrated in Lungarni (Arno River promenades).


Tuscan dinner with herbs

Next wednesday, the 13th of June, another special dinner with tuscan recipes:

AROMATIC HERBS : a dinner with tuscan recipes by Mazzanti
This is the menù:

Potato fritters
Marinated black olives
Linguine (long pasta similar to Spaghetti) with basil and lemon
Small pork chops with aromatic herbs
Marrows with thyme

Wines selected by our sommelier:
Prosecco - Canavel
Terlaner (Cantina Sociale di Terlano)

Recipes by Gianmarco Mazzanti

MENU (€ 26 per person): including wine, water, service and reservation.
For booking:
il Rifrullo
+39 055 234.26.21
v. S.Niccolò 55/r
50125 Firenze


Music in Florence in the summer

FI.ESTA (FIrenze ESTAte) is the name that italian singer Piero Pelù has invented to promote the summer events taking place in Florence, Italy.

Many occasions for art forms -ranging from Music to Literature, through Cinema, Dance and Theatre - to express their energy in every part of the city, such as Forte Belvedere, Fiesole and the main squares of the historical centre. This summer, opened with a Muse live concert at Piazzale Michelangelo, will go on with national artist like Dario Fo and Roberto Benigni taking part to ground-breaking exhibitions.

For Florence major, this is a new way to open a city with a long heritage of art and history to the future and to different art influences, besides inviting foreigners to participate at the fullest to the social and cultural life of the city.

In the program I see:

- on saturday, the 7th of July at "Ippodromo Le Mulina" near Parco delle Cascine (the big park named Cascine) there will the Evolution Festival: rock e metal concerts. many heavy metals and rock bands will perform in Florence during the Evolution Festival:

Sebastian Bach
Virgin Steele
Fates Warning
Gory Blister
King Crow
Flashback of Anger

- on thursday, the 12th of July, ZIGGY MARLEY (JAM) will play in a live concert.


Estate fiesolana 2007

Estate Fiesolana ; Fiesole: 15 June – 14 July.
Estate Fiesolana (Fiesole Summer festival) has reached its 60th edition and presents classic music, jazz music, theater perfomances, great events.
On the northern hill that offers the perfect view of the Florence city (and it's fresh!), Fiesole is the most antique Etruscan settlement of the Florentine area. With the antique Roman Theater that still works wonderfully for modern performances.
This year special guest for the movie festival will be Spike Lee, famous U.S. director (from 10th to 13th of July).
Info toll free number: 800414240. Here is a very short list of some of the main events.
15th June - San Domenico Church, at 9:00 pm: Schubert, “Winterreise” op.89 D 911. Leonardo De Lisi, tenor Matteo Fossi, piano.
17th June - San Domenico Church, at 9.00 pm: Chamber Orchtra “I nostri tempi”. Piero Bellugi conductor. Music: Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart Serenata K 320 in re maggiore “Posthorn” Franz Schubert Sinfonia n.° 5 in si bem. maggiore D 485
18th June: Grand opening : Fiesole, Teatro Romano. 9.00 pm. “I’m Nothing but a Man”. In memory of Father Ernesto Balducci. Performers: Paolo Hendel, Ilaria Onorato, Coro Multietnico Mikrokosmos, Gruppo Markhauasi. Folk music from all over the world and readings from Father Ernesto Balducci.
27th June, Teatro Romano. Piero Bellugi conductor, Orchestra “I Nostri Tempi” (35 musicians). Music: Mozart, Schubert.
28th June, Piazza Mino, at 6.00 pm. Opening of the “VIVERE JAZZ FESTIVAL”: JOHN SURMAN, ORCHESTRA DELLA TOSCANA.
29th June, Teatro Romano, at 9.30 pm: GIANLUIGI TROVESI TROVESI octet, special guest STEFANO BOLLANI, Gianluigi Trovesi (sax alto, piccolo, alto clarinets), Beppe Caruso (trombone), Massimo Greco (trumpet, electronics), Marco Remondini (cello, electronics), Roberto Bonati (double bass), Marco Micheli (double bass, electric bas), Fulvio Maras (percussions, electronics), Vittorio Marinoni (drums)
29th June, Ridotto Teatro Romano, 11.30 pm: TOMASZ STANKO quartet. Tomasz Stanko (trompet), Marcin Wasilewski (piano), Slawomir Kurkiewicz (double bass), Michal Miskiewicz (drums)
30th june, Ridotto del Teatro Romano, 7.00 pm MISHA ALPERIN Piano solo
30th june, Teatro Romano, 9.30 ENRICO RAVA quintet: Enrico Rava (trumpet), Gianluca Petrella (trombone), Roberto Gatto (drums), Andrea Pozza (piano), Rosario Bonaccorso (bas)
more info: http://www.estatefiesolana.it/ (only in italian)


MTV total request live in Florence

The MTV Total Request Live arrives in Florence at Piazzale Michelangelo.
From the 5th of June to the 15th of June.

On the top hill of Piazzale Michelangelo a spectacular stage for several italian and international stars. Great Italian and International pop stars on the beautiful city stages (and on MTV). The male speaker is a very well known vj on the Italian MTV, with different female speakers in each town.
Here are the events:
5 june, at 2.30 pm: Tiziano Ferro (very famous italian singer).
Thursday 7 June, at 3.00 pm: 30 Seconds to Mars.
Friday 8 June, at 3.00 pm: Inoki, The New Story.
Tuesday 12 June: Negramaro (italian band from the south of Italy).
Wednesday 13 June, at 3.00 pm: Gemelli Diversi (hip hop italian band)
Tuesday 14 June: the voices actors of 'Shrek 3': Cameron Diaz and Antonio Banderas.
Friday 15 June: J-Ax, The Styles (see it in the picture).


WI-FI spot with live music in Florence

Last saturday a new place opened in Piazza dei Ciompi. From the 2nd of June to the 28th of June every evening there will be live concerts, dj set, exhibition and yoga courses in the Ciompi square. Moreover the place will be wi-fi connected for free web surfing. (I'm not sure they will do this!!!)

Tonight from 8.30 pm a trio will perform brasilian music: bossanova, samba and songs from Jobim, Caetano Veloso, Chico Buarque, Gilberto Gil, Djavan

Tomorrow from 8.30 pm a tuscan musician (SIMONE PASCARELLA) will perform jazz music together with Bernardo Guerra (drums).


Last friday I've been to the teatral tests of Lorenzo il Magnifico (mese Mediceo): it was really a nice experience. I've enjoyed the show, the 2 actors were funny.


Beer tasting and dinner in Florence

Next wednesday the 6th of June, at Rifrullo Restaurant and lounge bar, tasting of Beer: 3 different types of beer produced by an italian brewery from the north of Italy.
From 8.30 pm, served dinner and free tasting of 3 different beers.
The menu is chosen in order to match the taste and quality of the beers.
more info (I'm sorry it's in italian)

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