In Ferrara I used to sing in Coro Polifonico “Santo Spirito”, where we performed mostly baroque sacred music. I was very proud of that hobby, that allowed me to sing in prestigious theaters together with famed orchestras and world-class directors. Unfortunately when I moved to Florence I had to give up on this activity and I missed it a lot. I tried to look for something similar in my new location but couldn’t find anything that matched my time budget and my taste. Read the rest of this entry »
Last Tuesday night I attended a concert where Maggio Musicale Orchestra played Beethoven’s 9th Symphony directed by Zubin Mehta. The concert was in Piazza della Signoria and was for free, so it was packed. It was a very hot night but despite the sense of suffocation I was glad to be there cause the concert has been great. Read the rest of this entry »
A new tradition has been established in Ferrara lately. Every year we celebrate the new summer with a city-wide night party thrown on the solstice day. In yesterday’s edition I attended a wonderful fireworks show where music and light synchronized together built a moving synesthetic show. Fireworks went on for about 45 minutes, with a sequence of several songs, each one with a different choreography. Read the rest of this entry »
Last weekend we celebrated the bachelor party for one of our friends. People usually organize late-at-night bachelor parties in dancing places, but we picked him up at his home Sunday morning at 8:30am, saying we had to drive a long way before getting to the place. He was then blindfolded, confused with earphones and loud music and brought in the countryside a few minutes out of the city center where half a dozen warriors were waiting for us, all dressed up in military camouflage, guns and all sorts of strange equipment. Read the rest of this entry »
Between a movie and the next one you can sunbath on the grass in front of the theater or sit at the internal cafè. Here at the FEFF in the middle of the crowd it happens strangers will sit at your table and you suddenly find yourself doing conversation in a casual group of half a dozen people, one from Beijing, one from Klagenfürt, one from Udine, one from Villach. You can feel like you are in a global melting (G-s)pot, and that’s not just for cinephiles.
So once again I’m attending the Far East Film Festival in Udine. This year they run 8 movies a day and there’s practically no pause to eat. If you want to miss nothing you need a catheter Yesterday I got two autographs from NAKATA Hideo (director of Death Note movies) and YAMAZAKI Takashi (director of Always Sunset On Third Street). Stay tuned.
Few days ago I’ve been at the Madison Square Garden, arguably the world’s most famous arena. New yorkers simply call it The Garden, as if it were the only garden out there, or worse, as if it were a garden at all! Well, actually it’s not even on Madison Square. Thanks to wikipedia I discovered the current name is just a legacy from the original arena, that one century ago used to be located in a garden at Madison Square. Anyhow entering the arena is impressive: you feel like getting into a temple, a place where people go to worship their idols. Oh wait, that’s exactly what they do there!
The show on stage was a basketball match in the College Hoops league, between St. John’s and Pittsburgh. I went with Carla, a friend from New York. She likes college basketball and taught me all I had to know and something more, e.g. that college teams usually have the name of an animal (Pittsburgh Panthers) but St. John’s is an exception (they call themselves the Red Storm). We took the obligatory beer (that they served us with a built-in pretzel) and brought it in.
Before the match started an actual singer sung the national anthem, everybody standing, hats off. Pitts were much stronger and they easily blew out St. John’s 81-57, but it’s been fun anyway. The home team had cheerleaders, dancers and a fanfare band and shot t-shirts to the public during time-outs. Much fun!
Too bad I’m already back to Italy.
Cooking is hard stuff. There are recipes out there that would take advantage of project management methods. Take for example Cappelletti in brodo, a soup you can have in Emilia Romagna. To make it you have to prepare a broth with beef, chicken, pork sausage and vegetables, than save the broth for later and grind the meat together with parmigiano cheese, some grated bread and a little nutmeg until you have a uniform compound. Then, you make a mixture with flour and eggs, stirring until you get a compact and dry but still soft yellow bowl of dough. Then you make it flat with a rolling pin and cut it in squares 4-5cm wide. Then you put a small take of meat compound in each square, bend it and close it with a clever usage of your fingers, in the typical cappelletti shape. Then you make it rest for 8 hours, to make it dry and solid. Finally, you cook it in the original broth. Since recipes like this can easily keep you busy for a couple days, you should better get organized…
This was taken last September at the Ferrara Balloons Festival. There were many huge balloons, some of them with crazy shapes. You could even buy a ticket to ride one. An interesting thing: I discovered balloons are better flown in the morning or in late afternoon, apparently because the hottest and coldest hours make navigation harder.
Last time I’ve been in New York, one night Ale brought us to Ludlow Street. Ale is a fan of Lower East Side, and I definitely approve his taste. That area is filled with strange and interesting places, for both dining and having fun. That night Ale brought us first to the Back Room (which I already knew, maybe I’ll talk about this in a different post) and then to Mehanata, a Bulgarian bar and dance floor. Read the rest of this entry »