Cultural association Amici del Nidiaci will re-launch its violin lessons for elementary school children on September 8 at 6pm. Led by experienced instructor Mariana Pinto, and held in Italian, lessons will take place every Thursday in the volunteer-run Nidiaci Garden (via d’Ardiglione 30, behind Santa Maria del Carmine). Violins for the course have been donated by members of the association.
No reservations are required and new participants are welcome to join at any time. For insurance purposes, however, students must be accompanied by an adult member of the association, which requires an annual fee of 10 euro.
First launched in October 2014, these violin lessons have become a distinctive feature of Oltrarno community life. The Amici del Nidiaci association also organizes numerous other activities, including a free English language course every Monday at 5pm with mother-tongue teacher and translator Anna Lord.
These and other initiatives continue the work of Edward Otis Bartlett, former commissioner of the American Red Cross in Italy, who founded the Nidiaci Garden as a community center for San Frediano children in 1920. After a real estate company purchased a private portion of the property—with expansion plans that would have impacted garden use—area families signed a 2013 agreement with local government to keep the garden open on a volunteer basis.
To learn more about the association’s current initiatives, see the official website.