"THE FLOWERS OF PARNASSUS - Portraits of artistes from the Reggio Emilia scene"

Reggio Emilia State Records Office

16-25 April 2010 - Exhibitions



         To mark the 13th edition of the "Settimana della cultura" (Culture Week), promoted every year by the Ministry of Cultural Heritage and Activities at the Reggio Emilia State Records Office, the final instalment of an exhibition of portraits depicting artistes, taken from the Vivi private archive, will go on show. The project was launched in fact during the 2009 "Settimana della cultura", when the first instalment of paintings was exhibited.

         The decision to put on two consecutive shows dedicated to the performers from the Reggio Emilia theatres was motivated by the desire to give each artiste the space and prominence that they deserve. This, amongst other things, is what struck the visitors who came to see the 2009 edition of the exhibition, demonstrated too by the exhibition guide, in which each performer was presented in a brief biographical description. The artistes exhibited in 2010 follow on from those exhibited in 2009, in approximate alphabetical order, with Brighenti, De Giuli Borsi and Donizetti featuring in 2009, and Rossini, Peri, Verdi, Paganini and many more being exhibited this year.

         Most of the singers, dancers and actors depicted were the actual celebrities of the time, nearly all of whom tread the boards of the Reggio Emilia City Theatre (Teatro Municipale).

         Several of these names are still well-known today: this is true of Giuditta Pasta, for example, the singer who Bellini wrote Norma for, Rossini wrote Il Viaggio a Reims for and Donizetti wrote Anne Bolena for. Adelaide Ristori was considered the greatest actress of her time; she triumphed not only in the major European theatres, but also in theatres in America, Australia and New Zealand. Upon her performance in Reggio Emilia in 1858, she was given a gold medal which was coined specially for the occasion.

         Cagnoli dedicated a poem to the Reggio Emilia native Rosalinda Silva (née Grossi), whose life was cut short in 1804, when she was only 27 years-old, after contracting typhus in Venice. She was buried in the Church of St. Teresa. Carolina Ungher's fame is demonstrated by the very marble bust which was dedicated to her to mark her performances in Reggio Emilia in 1837 and 1838, along with the laudatory poems written by Viani, Peretti and Cagnoli. These and many other names are the artistes and composers whose portraits are exhibited.

         Again this year the exhibition will be accompanied by a guide which, as well as offering a synopsis of the history of the Reggio Emilia City Theatre (Teatro Municipale) and its seasons, includes artistic and biographical insights into all of the performers featured in the exhibition, including those in last year's exhibition.

         The exhibition will take place at the premises of the Reggio Emilia State Records Office at 6 Corso Cairoli, from 16 to 25 April, open everyday from 9.30 a.m. to 12.30 p.m., including on national holidays. During the exhibition there will be the exclusive possibility to watch the projection of the video Archivi e territorio (Archives and the Local Area).









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