John Bensalhia sets course for a wide-ranging choice of events in Italy this August
Writing these monthly event guides highlights the sheer diversity and range of enjoyable happenings in Italy all year round. This month alone, we've got film festivals, street performances, handicrafts, and even chimney sweeps!
So without any further ado, let's make broom... sorry, room for August!
Emilia-Romagna, Till 10th August 2019
Currently showing at the time of writing, this year's Bobbio Film Festival is guaranteed to be another blockbuster for all movie buffs.
Cinema fans can enjoy a range of diverse and interesting films, with the chance to engage in lively discussion with audience and directors. Among the films showing in August are The Invisible Witness, Travelling With Adele and Star Dust.
Those lucky enough to get a place on each can undertake film-related courses – one of which is a High Specialisation Course In Directing, the other a residential course on film criticism.
Sicily, 1st- 3rd August 2019
A literal blaze of glory comes to Sicily this August.
Teatro del Fuoco – the Fire Theatre – is about to celebrate its 12th edition. This year's edition will revolve around 'Fire & Light', spotlighting the wonders of lights, illumination, and how the concept of light can bring so much wonder and creativity to all.
It's an unforgettable show that attracts many visitors from around the world. Italian and international artists perform some spellbinding fire-related shows, full of dedication and talent. As well as this, there will be fire in the bellies, as a selection of chosen chefs will be cooking up thematic dishes inspired by the Teatro del Fuoco. The regions of Palermo, Gibellina and Zafferana Etnea are cooking up some specially themed dishes, created by some of the most talented chefs in Italy.
Torre Regina Giovanna, 3rd August 2019
Take yourself back in time to the cool cat days of the 1950s and early 1960s. Rock 'n' roll is here to stay, and Torre Regina Giovanna's special party is here to prove it!
The '50s and '60s revival is not only a must for anyone who grew up during this time, but for anyone looking for a good time. Fans wanting an antidote to the soulless autotune stuff of today will love the music, which this year features The Di Maggio Connection, Space Rocket, Crash Boom Bang, and special guest, rockabilly icon, Robert Gordon!
As well as the good times rock 'n' roll music, there's other attractions to enjoy at the party. Enjoy some tasty street food. Recall the days of the American cars and bikes. Girls and boys can also get the look of the period, with special make-up artists, vintage hairdresser and barber shop for the ultimate '50s/'60s image!
Aosta, 3rd August 2019
One of the things we like to champion at Italy Magazine is home-grown, handicraft-making talent. What better way to see this in action that at Aosta's Foire d’été this August?
As well as being a Summer Fair, it's a wonderful showcase of some first class handcraft products. The array of goodies covers a broad range of types and materials, including wooden sculptures, carvings, stone products and handmade toys. If it's someone's birthday coming up, and you know that they like original, quirky and unique gifts, then this is the place to be. You could also begin your Christmas shopping early!
It's 50 years since the first Foire d’été, and it's an event that continues to stand the test of time. All of the family will have a great time, with added music, performance and charm.
Fiera delle Grazie in Curtatone
Lombardy, 14th- 18thAugust 2019
Melding the sacred and a sense of fun, the 47thedition of Fiera delle Grazie will have lots in store for all the family this year.
Curtatone is such a lovely part of Lombardy, combining natural splendour and a friendly community. The annual festival encompasses all aspects of a great event, including music, culture, performance, plus food and drink. For the children, there's an amusement park and a pyrotechnics show.
Fiera delle Grazie has a special slant towards art, most notably with the International Madonnari Competition to find out the best chalk drawing artists. The first night sees the blessing of the artists' chalks, with the victor declared by the 15th. Now that's chalking it up to experience.
Molise, 17th- 18thAugust 2019
With Summer in its element, what better way to enjoy Molise than some great entertainment at Castel del Giudice?
Street entertainment provides some surprising finds in all spheres, with raw talent just waiting to be appreciated by a large audience. As well as musicians, performers such as jugglers, acrobats and artists will be providing their own unique brands of entertainment.
A hugely enjoyable event, and a great day out for all the family. Mum and dad can enjoy some of the finest in local cuisine street food, while the children can take part in specially organised games and workshops.
Street treats, indeed.
Val Vigezzo, 30thAugust - 2ndSeptember 2019
Not since Dick Van Dyke stepped in time as Bert has there been such a spotlight on the chimney sweep.
But head on over to Val Vigezzo this August, and you'll find plenty of people brushing up on their chimney sweep interest.
The 38th meeting brings chimney sweeps from all around the globe, with visitors coming from the likes of Japan and America to come and take part in a massive parade. Marching through the local streets to the sound of bands, the participants finish the event by re-enacting chimney sweeping the old-fashioned way, complete with tools such as the sweep, the rope, and the rasp.
Chimney sweepers will be telling their stories and recounting their experiences, and there will also be a special ceremony to mark the importance of the job. Make a clean sweep and be sure to visit this event later in the month.
Carmagnola, 30thAugust - 8thSeptember 2019
This year sees an important milestone in the popular Pepper Festival. 2019 sees the 70th edition of Carmagnola's National Bell Pepper Fair, promising a great celebration of all things peppery!
It's touted as the biggest Italian trade fair of an agricultural product. Special tastings, workshops and show cooking demonstrations will take place at the event, all relating to the humble pepper. Even if you're not mad about peppers, it's still worth a visit, as there is much to keep you entertained, with music, street food stalls, theatre, cabaret, and a children's area – marking it out as a great time for all the family.
Special guests include Arturo Brachetti, Roby Facchinetti, Tinto, Alberto Cirio, and Oscar Farinetti.