Leisure News

Celebrate 31 Day of Italians in October

Thirty-One Days of Italians has released its 2023 List, honoring extraordinary people of Italian heritage who significantly influenced the history and development of America. The project was launched in 2006, with a list being provided annually for the month of October. The first day in October honors the Italian immigrant and the last day is set aside to honor someone not on the list. Honorary members are on the List every year and include Fr. Pietro Bandini, Constantino Brumidi, Mother Francis Cabrini, Enrico Caruso, Christopher Columbus, Enrico Fermi, Amadeo Pietro Giannini, Guglielmo Marconi, Filippo Mazzei, Antonio Meucci, Maria Montessori, Andrea …

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September series in Detroit to celebrate Italian, local design

The Consulate of Italy in Detroit and the Dante Alighieri Society of Michigan will once again team up to produce LoveITDetroit. The month-long celebration of artists, innovators, designers, architects, engineers, brands, influencers and more from Italy and Detroit will hold forth throughout September at 1001 Woodward Avenue. A virtual experience is also available. The second-annual series of events will take place during the Detroit Month of Design. Last year’s event won Detroit the distinction of City of Italian Creativity in the World by the Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation. For details, click here.  

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National fest to screen Italian film in Northbrook

Italian Film Festival USA will screen “Aspromonte, Land of the Forgotten” at 7 p.m. on Aug. 23 at the Northbrook Public Library. Directed by Mimmo Calopresti and released in 2019, the film will be presented in Italian with English subtitles. In 1951 in Africo, a small village in the southern valley of Aspromonte, a woman dies in childbirth because a doctor fails to arrive on time. No road connects Africo with other villages. In the wake of this tragedy, all of Africo’s including children – abandon their usual occupations and unite to build their own road. Giulia, the new school …

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Muti named CSO director music director emeritus

The Chicago Symphony Orchestra has named Ricardo Muti Music Director Emeritus for Life beginning in the 2023/24 season. The CSO’s 10th music director, Muti recently completed his 13th season at the helm of the celebrated symphony. He will assume the new role in September, when he conducts two weeks of concerts in Chicago to open the CSO’s 133rd season. Muti was recognized with the new artistic title during an onstage ceremony on June 23 at Orchestra Hall during the first of three performances of Beethoven’s “Missa solemnis,” which marked his final subscription concert as Zell Music Director.  

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Fazio unveils new Cubs song at Wrigley Field

Windy City crooner Sam Fazio debuted a newly discovered Cubs song before the team’s Aug. 2 matchup with the Cincinnati Reds at Wrigley Field. Titled “Come Out to Wrigley Field,” the tune was written by Pasquale “P.J.” Panico, a World War II veteran, musician and retired city of Chicago employee who passed away at the age of 95. A recording of the song was discovered among Panico’s belongings by his grandson, Rob Sarwark. “I was gathering up his old records for safekeeping, and one was clearly not commercially produced,” Sarwark says. What he unearthed was a demo of a Cubs …

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Unique Tuscan guitars available in the Windy City

In the heart of Tuscany, a group of artisans and luthiers dedicated to the crafts of woodworking, metallurgy and musicianship produce some of the funkiest, high-quality guitars on Earth. In his company’s headquarters, master luthier Bruno Bacci personally adjusts the tension and intonation on each instrument before it leaves the shop, ensuring maximum vibration and sound definition on every electric guitar, bass and baritone guitar that bears his name. The formula has proven to be a hit, as some of the world’s most highly talented guitarists, such as American jazz and funk guitarist Mark Lettieri and Sicilian jazz and rock …

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Documentary explores iconic hospital, painting

Film Festival USA will screen “The Innocents of Florence” at 7 p.m. on May 22 at Harris Hall 107, Northwestern University, 1881 Sheridan Road, Evanston. Directed by David Battistella, the documentary explores the history of the Ospedale degli Innocenti, founded in 1446 as a hospital for young mothers and babies, and the restoration of its logo, the painting “The Madonna of the Innocents.” The concert is free and open to the public. For more, click here.  

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Four C Notes mark 10th anniversary

The Four C Notes will celebrate their 10-year anniversary in 2023 with a series of events throughout the Chicago area. The Midwest’s only tribute group dedicated to recreating the music of Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons, the ensemble was founded by John Michael Coppola, who understudied the role of Frankie Valli for the Broadway hit “Jersey Boys.” The group’s 2023 season will kick off with a show on May 24 at Metropolis Performing Arts Center in Arlington Heights and culminate on Aug. 6 during the Italian fest in Naperville. Other shows throughout the year will include engagements at the …

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Italian duo team up to create multimedia Mozart exhibit

Mozart may have been born and raised in Austria, but he was among classical music’s most “Italian” composers, with most of his operas written in the bel canto style and the Italian language. It should come as no surprise that “Mozart Immersive: The Soul of a Genius,” currently on display at Lighthouse ArtSpace Chicago, has deep Italian roots. The 360-degree audiovisual experience is the brainchild of Artistic Creator Massimiliano Siccardi and Composer and Arranger Luca Longobardi. “With this piece, we wanted to represent every part of Mozart’s life, from his happy times as a child prodigy and throughout his amazingly …

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Lyric posts ‘Verdi Voices’ performance on website

On Feb. 6, a pair of Lyric Opera favorites, soprano Tamara Wilson and tenor Russell Thomas, teamed up with music director Enrique Mazzola to showcase excerpts from Giuseppe Verdi’s operatic opus. Included were the shimmering overture to “La forza del destino,” favorite arias from “Don Carlos” and “Simon Boccanegra,” and mesmerizing duets from “Aida” and “Otello.” Rarely performed duets and arias rounded out the program, which the Lyric dubbed “Verdi Voices.” That concert is now enshrined on the Lyric website and can be streamed for free. To view, click here.  

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