Sicily-born singer-songwriter Levante is one of those pop stars who it’s impossible not to like, with her infectious tunes and crossover talents. (Her debut novel Se non ti vedo non esisti was published in 2017, shortly before her third album, Nel caos di stanze stupefacenti, hit the airwaves.) Having reached a broader audience as a judge on Italian X Factor, she’s set to embark on a rock-centric “Caos in Europa” international tour, but her home country concerts will be a bit more subdued, staged at Italy’s most prestigious theatres. Tickets for the Teatro Verdi show start at around 21 euro and are available via BitConcerti.
Marvel at the world’s masters of motion during the 2018 edition of DanzainFiera. The dance showcase, open to both trade professionals and the public, has an aptly succinct theme this year: “WOW!” The new installment brings a special emphasis on street dancing, hip-hop and funk styles, with calendar highlights including a kid-friendly freestyle event organized by the Fundanza association (10.30am, February 25) and a hip-hop crew competition called Five Skillz in which each team has seven minutes to show off their moves (3pm, February 24). Among this year’s special guests are Marvin Gofin, fresh off of Madonna’s 2017 tour, and four-time tap dancing world champion Alexandr Ostanin. For the full program, see the website.
A past edition of Storytellers Rome. Ph. Linda Martinez
Owners of The Beehive hostel Linda Martinez and Steve Brenner have been reviving the art of oral lore for three years with their monthly “Storytellers” series in Rome. Now the initiative is coming to Florence for an inaugural edition with a riveting theme: “Turning Point.” Members of the online group will vote each month on the evening’s guiding topic, but stories can take off in any number of directions. Unlike a traditional open mic, storytellers don’t read from scripts or essays, but speak directly to the crowd. Participation in the storytelling portion is not required to attend, and entrance is free (though the “turning point” tales will be best savored with an inexpensive glass of wine in hand).
Check out our full BHMF special here!
Bottoms up: Chianti Lovers is back! The Consorzio Vino Chianti’s annual preview event of the previous year’s vintage will bring 100 wineries with 500 wines in tow to the Fortezza da Basso. In addition to spotlighting the 2017 production, the event showcases the Riserva 2015. A noteworthy change this year is the participation of the Consorzio di Tutela del Morellino di Scansano: 20 wineries under this jurisdiction will have their production primed for sipping. For connoisseurs and trade professionals (who get exclusive early access between 9.30am-4pm), the event is a sort of year-in-review; for everyone, it’s a gleeful tasting spree in the guise of a serious study. For more information, see the Consorzio Vino Chianti website.
No need to venture to Venice or Viareggio: Carnival has caught on in Florence. A period of parades and merriment leading up to the somber Christian season of Lent, Carnival typically means mocking authority and indulging our collective id. But family-friendly initiatives are on the local program, with a children’s carnival in piazza Ognissanti on February 10 (2-6pm; tel. 055 3244722) and a “toy city” in Sesto Fiorentino from February 3-13 (more info here). On Fat Tuesday, February 13, Teatro Verdi will host Orchestra della Toscana’s Carnival concert, a musical journey to Eastern Europe (see the ORT website for more information). Stay tuned to TF for more Carnival details to come!
Boxe Night Florence brings a heavy dose of testosterone to the Tuscan capital, with six blockbuster boxers from around the world taking to the ring. Casual viewers with no established favorite can root for Florentine native Fabio Turchi, 24 years old and holder of a remarkable 13-0, 10 KO rating (that latter acronym stands for his default “knockout” wins, or the times his opponents were unable to get up for a full ten seconds, if you’re keeping score). If this all sounds a little heavy-handed for Florence, fear not—unmistakably Tuscan touches will soften the blows. VIP spectators around the ring will enjoy a dinner of regional specialties including ribollita and peposo. Get ticketing information here.
Feed your imagination at this full and vibrant exhibition spanning close to five decades of Italian illustration (1964-2012). Pinocchio, Harry Potter, Topolino, Heidi and all the rest will feature a selection of 300 works from the historic Florentine publisher Adriano Salani, whose popularity exploded after the house released Harry Potter e la Pietra Filosofale, the Italian edition of J.K. Rowling’s first book in the Harry Potter series. Active since 1862, Salani is one of Italy’s longest-running publishing houses; its retrospective will feature not just the illustrations of Salani editions, but a range of archival documents, original flyers and booklets. See the website for opening times and more information.