I’ve often written about composer Gioachino Rossini (who was born in my home-town Pesaro in 1792) and about the Rossini Opera Festival (ROF) – a music festival attracting music lovers from all over the world that celebrated its 38th edition this year.
Yet, last August, I was able to fully enjoy the latest ROF edition as my sister Cristina (with me in the picture) got me the tickets to the Siège de Corinthe, La pietra di paragone, and Stabat Mater. In addition to that, we even went to see Il viaggio a Reims performed by the young artists from the Accademia Rossiniana, as our daughter Costanza took part to a children music laboratory at the Rossini theatre during the performance called Il viaggetto a Reims (‘The little journey to Reims’).
Costanza took part to the music laboratory for the third year in a row! It is a very well organized initiative by the Pesarese Music School InMusica where children are told the story of Il Viaggio a Reims and are introduced to all characters with a playful method in the upper hall of the theatre. At the end of Act I children are shown to the gallery (‘loggione’) to watch the artists’ performance; at the end of the final Act they all walk into the parterre holding hands and, as one of their companions walks up on the stage to play the ‘King of France’, they all sit down and attend the very last part of the staging.
When the performance is over, their parents are shown to the upper hall where children are proud to show what they have learnt. They all wear a crown (they all are princes and princesses to their mums and dads, aren’t they?) and perform a music from Il Viaggio a Reims singing notes and playing percussions (this year Costanza got a tambourine and was very satisfied with that!).
Il Viaggio a Reims, ossia l’albergo del giglio d’oro (‘The journey to Reims, or the hotel of the golden Fleur-de-lis) is an operatic dramma giocoso by Rossini to an Italian libretto by Luigi Balocchi, commissioned to celebrate the coronation of French king Charles X in Reims in 1825. The ‘journey’ was first performed at the ‘Théâtre Italien’ in Paris on June 19th 1825 (it is a demanding work as it requires 14 soloists) but the manuscript was assumed lost. The different parts of the manuscript were re-found and re-assembled in the 1970’s by Janet Johnson and Philip Gossett. On Aug 18th 1984 the first performance – after the reconstruction – was staged at the Rossini Opera Festival, conducted by Claudio Abbado and directed by Luca Ronconi.
A few figures (almost 16.000 tickets sold, to a total of about 1.060.404 Euro) confirm the importance of Rossini Opera Festival and its capability of attracting music lovers from all the world (70% of the visitors come from abroad according to ROF official website, mostly from France, Germany, United Kingdom, Switzerland, USA, Japan, Austria and Russia).
I want to thank Elisabetta Tamburello, Massimo Buonanno, Lorenzo Piscopiello and Marco Roveti for organizing such a meaningful event helping children get closer to music and fall in love with it.
Thank you guys and grazie, Cristina, for getting me the tickets!