Best events in Florence in November

Our top picks

Mary Gray
November 3, 2016 - 15:01

SPACE/From Galileo to Mars: Renaissance of the Artsciences
November 12, from 9am
Cinema Odeon & SACI – Palazzo dei Cartelloni, Florence


Professor Dava Newman, MIT: Inventor, Science and Engineering. Guillermo Trotti, A.I.A., Trotti and Associates,
Inc. (Cambridge, MA): Design Dainese (Vicenza, Italy): Fabrication. Dougas Sonders: Photography

Prepare for liftoff! Deputy Administrator of NASA Dava Newman and astronauts Nicole Stott and Paolo Nespoli are among the guests at this world-class science and arts symposium, organized by SACI. The first portion of the day will focus on presentations by renowned scientists, artists and designers. Using NASA’s mission to Mars as a conversational “launchpad”, the conference will shed light on the potential for multidisciplinary approaches to space exploration—special guest Guillermo Trotti, an architect and designer who’s worked with NASA, will bear witness to this collaborative spirit. From 3.30pm, guests can view artist Lia Halloran’s “Your Body is a Space that Sees”, a series dedicated to women in astronomy, along with work by SACI students. Admission is free; see SACI's website for the full program. 

USA/Election Night Party
November 8, from 7pm
Fosso Bandito, via del Fosso Macinante 4, Florence


Party lines have been crossed, absentee ballots have been mailed, and now the Tuscan American Association wants YOU…to attend a presidential election night watch party! Live coverage and state-by-state results will be broadcast on big screens at Fosso Bandito, and partygoers can enjoy live music and entertainment. Stands offering free street food will also be set up. At midnight the party will continue with an American jazz band and dancing through the morning at Binario 2 in Stazione Leopolda. American students are encouraged to participate, but all are welcome (bad hombres and nasty women included). More details will be available soon on the TAA website.


FOOD/Florence Food + Wine Biennial
November 10–28
Various venues in Florence


Get ready to embrace your inner gourmand! Florence’s Food + Wine Biennial returns with a packed program of conferences, cooking and cocktail shows, industry events and off-circuit fun open to the public. The official Biennial marketplace will take place in piazza della Repubblica (November 10–13, 10am–9pm). Non-professional ribollita lovers are invited to present their best recipes in the “Palio della ribolitta”, held at the Mercato Centrale (November 12, 11am–2pm; email to sign up). A street food showcase will be set up in piazza Bartali (viale Giannotti 81–85, November 11–13) and participating restaurants around town will put creative twists on the “Menù del Giorno” concept. View the full program here

November 8 & 9, 9pm
Teatro Verdi, via Ghibellina 99, Florence


No pop hooks here: prog-rock pioneers and cult favorites King Crimson will bring their complex sound to Florence for two nights on their “The Elements of King Crimson” European tour. The prolific and decades-strong British group blends symphonic rhythms with touches of jazz and classical music, a style that’s been set since their 1969 debut album In the Court of the Crimson King, consistently ranked among the most influential of its genre. Though the band’s formation has changed significantly through the decades, guitarist Robert Fripp remains at the forefront. With Fripp steering the ship, the lineup also includes noted saxophonist Mel Collins and three percussionists. For ticketing information, see Teatro Verdi's website.

FILM/50 Giorni di Cinema
Until December 9
La Compagnia, via Cavour 50r, Florence


From River to River 2015 edition, courtesy of 50 Giorni di Cinema

Movie buffs have a full season ahead with the return of 50 Giorni di Cinema, Florence’s annual series of international film festivals. Launched at the end of October in a new location, the films continue with a one-day focus on the flood anniversary (November 4); the Festival Internazionale di Cinema e Donne, dedicated to women in cinema (November 5–9); Florence Queer Festival, where LGBTQ culture takes center stage (November 10–15); Lo Schermo dell’Arte, a celebration of contemporary art on screen (November 16–20); Il Cinema Ritrovato, which revisits classics (November 21–24); and Festival dei Popoli (November 25–December 2), which screens documentaries. Looking ahead, the “grand finale” comes in December with River to River Indian Film Festival (December 3–8) and the NICE City of Florence award (December 9). For the full program, which is still being defined, see the website.

INK/Florence Tattoo Convention
November 18–20
Fortezza da Basso, viale Filippo Strozzi, Florence


Mingle with ink masters from around the world at the ninth edition of the Florence Tattoo Convention. Trailblazers in tattoo artistry will be in the spotlight: this year there’s a particular focus on Japanese leaders of the Irezumi technique (key guests will include Ouka of Rat-Skill Tattoo and Tenkiryu of Honke Horiyoshi Family). But the event isn’t just for insiders: anyone curious about the tattoo techniques employed around the globe can stop in to see demonstrations of traditional Nordic approaches, dot work and tribal tattooing. The convention will also include a body piercing section, a children’s circus area and an art exhibition space (with standout works by Norwegian painter Henrik Uldalen and celebrity photographer Estevan Oriol, affiliated with Soul Assassins). View the full program here.

LEGACY/The Medici Dynasty Show: Special events
November 16 & 30, 7pm
Il Fuligno, via Faenza 48, Florence


With the recent Rai1 launch of Medici: Masters of Florence, buzz about the Renaissance city’s “royal family” has been in the air. While the TV series starts from the time of Giovanni di Bicci de’ Medici, founder of the family bank, local English theatre production The Medici Dynasty Show zeroes in on a conversation between the final two heirs. In addition to the regularly scheduled productions, two special events are on tap for this month: students can snag discounted tickets (18 euro) for the November 16 show and will have the chance to meet and greet the actors after the curtain call. The team will also celebrate the 300th performance on November 30 with a cocktail party open to the audience after the show. For more information, see the website.


Numerous events are also being organized in commemoration of the flood of 1966. Here are some highlights.

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