We can’t wait to see the back of 2020 and to see in a happier, more hopeful 2021. Forget the parties and fireworks in the piazzas, instead Florence has devised a different way to celebrate the New Year.
Official New Year 2021 celebrations in Florence
Tune into the City of Florence’s YouTube channel to welcome 2021 in Florence. Future is the title of the night’s events, which will include a children’s New Year celebration at 4pm. The main festivities will begin at 9pm and will include musical performances by singer-songwriter Daniele Silvestri, Erica Mou and rapper Ghemon. Irish cellist Naomi Berrill will provide the accompaniment to ballerina Jennifer Rosati’s dance steps.
All of the performances, written and directed by Edoardo Zucchetti and Francesco Cacchiani, will take place in the Palazzo Vecchio. Tuscan actor Maurizio Lombardi will conduct the night’s celebrations in the guise of a wizard who suddenly appears in the middle of a deserted and silent Florence and, as by if magic, grants us access to the Palazzo Vecchio.
Music and Concerts
At 6pm on December 31, a marvellous musical production will take place at the Sala della Malachite in the Stibbert Museum. A viola duo consisting of Stefano Zanobini (first viola of the Orchestra della Toscana) and Hildegard Kuen (violist of the Euphoria Quartet) will perform music by Nardini, Cambini and Mozart in a lyrical ushering in of the New Year. The concert will be accompanied by a historical-visual guide to the venue and will be streamed live on the A.Gi.Mus. Firenze YouTube channel.
Jazz4Christmas brings the best of Italian and Tuscan jazz live streamed to your home to celebrate the end of 2020. Performing at 9pm, it will be viewable via the Facebook pages of Music Pool, Musicus Concentus, Pisa Jazz and Jazz Club of Vicchio.
International Festival ‘Italian Brass Week’ – Winter Edition will see soloists perform ‘Stornelli in Jazz’ at 3pm on December 31, bringing together Florentine folk songs and jazz in a memorable combination. Musicians include Andrea Tofanelli on trumpet, and Nico Gori on clarinet and sax. They will be joined by the artistic director of the Festival, first horn of the Maggio Musicale Fiorentino Orchestra, Luca Benucci and the Italian Brass Week House Band, consisting of Piero Frassi on piano, Matteo Anelli on double bass and Vladimiro Coals on drums. Streamed from the the roof of the Medici Hotel, the performance can be watched on the Facebook channel and YouTube channel of the festival.
New Year’s celebrations in nearby Prato
In nearby Prato, tune into the Museum of Palazzo Pretorio’s website to enjoy a New Year’s Concert on January 1 at 11am. The Ensemble Cappella Neapolitana will play a recital of Neapolitan songs dating to the seventeenth century in the museum halls surrounded by art in the After Caravaggio exhibition.
New Year’s Eve takeaways
Many restaurants are continuing (and improving!) their takeaway and home delivery services.
Le Tre Rane Ruffino is offering free home delivery in Florence and surrounding areas on this delicious New Year’s menu: lentil flan with Livorno-inspired sauce; baked tortello with leek, pumpkin and Tuscan kale sauce; veal tenderloin with potato rosti and Bordelaise sauce; chestnut pancake with cavallucci cookie cream; chocolate praline. The menu (35 euro per person) comes with a complimentary bottle of Sparkling Rosé Ruffino. Orders to: WhatsApp 378 3050220 / book by December 30.
Fishermen-turned-restaurant Vivo is primed to deliver a New Year’s box of fresh fish – 12 oysters, 1kg scallops, red prawns, Argentario pink prawns, slipper lobsters, Orbetello sea bream and more – to your door (160 euro).
Osteria dell’Enoteca offers a four-course menu (35 euro per person) centred on boiled meats and lentils, plus some fabulous sparkling wines.
Treat yourself to the Four Seasons and a Michelin-starred New Year’s Eve home delivery menu by Vito Mollica. The 100-euro extravaganza includes an array of antipasti, cheeses, salami, two pasta courses (one’s fresh plin ravioli with truffled cheese fondue), beef Wellington, sea bass and a pot pourri of desserts.
International hub Ristorante Accademia is taking orders for a Fish or Meat menu (100 euro for two or 180 euro for four people) until December 30 (WhatsApp to 335 5618116). Includes dessert and a bottle of Prosecco di Valdobbiadene.
Gourmet tasting with Curious Appetite
Join Curious Appetite for a New Year’s Eve Bubbles & Barolo Gourmet Tasting led by a sommelier guide on Zoom. Tune in on December 31 at 10pm Italy time (open to screens around the world) to taste Prosecco, Franciacorta, Trento DOC and Barolo paired with gourmet bites like robiola, truffle pecorino, prosciutto-wrapped dates and marinated artichokes. BYO list of food/wine sent upon booking. Cost 30 US dollars per participant.
Tickets are limited and are available here.