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10 reasons to choose Ravenna Festival

by /// August 31, 2021
Estimated reading time: 4 minutes



Don’t be afraid to wake up: the 29th edition of Ravenna Festival is waiting for you from June 1st to July 22nd to honour – with the title We Have a Dream – the memory of Martin Luther King and the great dream of music and the arts.

Take a city and turn it into a stage, from the churches adorned with mosaics to the historic theatres, from the cloisters of ancient monasteries to the industrial archaeology sites. Imagine more than 50 days of events and over a thousand artists involved. Discover a thousand-year-old history, elegant traditions, and new horizons, on the toes or in time to the jazz, under skies of mosaics or under the stars.

1/10 One Festival, One City

Basilica of Sant'Apollinare in Classe | Photo © Jenny Carboni

Basilica of Sant’Apollinare in Classe | Photo © Jenny Carboni

“Thanks to the Festival, I fall in love with this city every time” says Giulia, who is from Ferrara but loves walking around the city centre of Ravenna. “I’ve already got the tickets for the concerts in the Byzantine churches, but there’s so much more to choose from!”

2/10 Kiss Me, Kate: the masterpiece of musicals

Andrea is from Milan and did not know the Festival before, but he will get to Ravenna for Kiss Me, Kate (June 7th, 8th, 9th), Cole Porter’s musical in the sizzling production by Opera North. “I’m passionate about musicals. I never miss them and Kiss Me, Kate is an Italian premiere, only in Ravenna”.

3/10 David Byrne

In July, Marco and his friends will leave Bologna, where they attend the University, and they will spend a week on the Romagna coast. They’ll be in Ravenna for David Byrne’s tour date (July 19th). “Ok, he doesn’t belong to our generation… but he’s the ex-frontman of the Talking Heads, a hero of rock, right?”.

4/10 The Roads of Friendship. Ravenna – Kiev

Riccardo Muti | Photo © Todd Rosenberg

Riccardo Muti | Photo © Todd Rosenberg

“I’ve been living in Italy for six years. But my family is in Kiev” Alina doesn’t hide her surprise – nor how touched she is – in discovering that Riccardo Muti will conduct a concert in her birthplace. Then the Ukrainian and Italian artists will perform in Ravenna together on July 3rd.

5/10 The Daily Tribute to Dante

ll Giardino Delle Delizie | Photo © Jenny Carboni

ll Giardino Delle Delizie | Photo © Jenny Carboni

Daniela and Chiara are from Ravenna. “Nothing better than a summer morning here”. After breakfast in the city centre, the Franciscan Cloisters with Young Artists for Dante (every day, from June 1st to July 5th at 11am). One ticket costs less than a cappuccino!

6/10 The 100 Electric Guitars

Carolina is 10. When they asked her which instrument she wanted to play, she chose the electric guitar. “It will be a long week of concerts” – says Carolina’s mother, laughing – “but it’s nice that they created this… can I say feast?”. Events from June 19th to 24th, in Ravenna, Russi, and Comacchio.

7/10 A dancing Festival

Apparizione | Photo © Didier Philispart

Apparizione | Photo © Didier Philispart

“My wife has always loved dance”. Roberto admits, in his hands the tickets for Emio Greco’s Apparition (June 29th) and Bill T. Jones’s A Letter to My Nephew (July 11th). “I didn’t get it much at the beginning. Now I enjoy myself and I’m the first going through the programme looking for the dance events”.

8/10 The great concerts of symphonic and opera music

Carlo is proud of having been a season ticket holder since 1995. “Three concerts with Riccardo Muti, then Gergiev, Marshall, Davies, and Conlon – he lists by heart – “and this year we’ve got the ‘American’ programmes, featuring Bernstein, Glass, and Gerswhin”.

9/10 The Theatre of the World

“So many plays, I’ve already bought the tickets for Lettere a Nour, a premiere with Branciaroli” – says Grazia, who is an Environmental Science student and loves theatre. “It’s about Isis, it’s very relevant today”.

10/10 The Vespers at San Vitale at 7 pm

Basilica San Vitale | Photo © Luca Concas

Basilica San Vitale | Photo © Luca Concas

There’s who, like Lucia from Genoa, lives in Ravenna for love. Lucia and her husband never miss a daily concert of the Vespers at San Vitale (every day, from June 1st to July 5th at 11am): “The sacred music, the concerts, the summer evenings: happy times”.


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