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Serchio delle Muse program, 18th – 25th August

This week Serchio delle Muse are presenting a rare opportunity to hear performances of traditional Neapolitan music.

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The ensemble Via Toledo Classic perform the most celebrated and popular songs, which express the feelings and hopes of Neapolitan people of all social levels. The tenor Roberto Iuliano leads the group. The musicians play with passion and joy and it is a delight to hear them.

There are three performances, the first on the 23rd of August is at the medieval town of Castiglione. Encircled by walls constructed in the thirteenth century, which have two large towers, Castiglione contains the church of San Pietro, erected in 723 and largely rebuilt in the twelfth century, and the church of San Michele constructed in the fourteenth century. Walking up to the battlements through the town, you come to a cemetery, where you see how many young men from this area lost their lives on the Russian front during the second world war.

The concert will be held in the central piazza and starts at 21.00.

The second concert will be held in the serene and tranquil grounds of the convent of St. Elisabetta and the cloisters and church of San Francesco, at Borgo a Mozzano on the 24th of August at 21.00.

The ample arched cloisters have a series of frescoes depicting the life of St. Francis and were painted by Domenico Manfredi between 1635 and 1637. The church of St. Francis was built in 1523.

The buildings are now the headquarters of the Misericordia of Borgo a Mozzano under the direction of the extremely capable Gabrielle Brunini.

The third concerto will be at Camporgiano in the piazza San Giacomo at 21.00 on Sunday the 25th of August.

Situated in a valley which divides the chain of mountains of the Apuan Alps and the Apennines, the various hamlets making up the town still maintain a medieval urban plan. The highlight of Camporgiano is the fortress of the Rocca Estense a citadel which dominates the town’s main square.

At the top of the citadel is a suspended garden.

The citadel is an example of Estense military architecture of the fifteenth century with its surrounding wall, trapezoidal plan and conical corner towers. – Imogen McNamara

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