After perusing the Italian (and English) websites for information regarding activities and events during this years Notte Bianca or White Night I was again frustrated with the lack of real quality info regarding specific/activities and events in English. I downloaded the official PDF for this year’s edition and will highlight the one’s I think most people would be interested in.
For those who have no idea what the heck I’m referring to and assume I am obsessed with P-Diddy’s famous white party, this is actually a really cool annual event held in major cities around Italy and basically guarantees you 12 hours of fun, late store-openings, concerts, art exhibitions, dance off’s, free breakfast, and museum openings. Around you will be so many people that you will actually want to isolate yourself at home for a week afterword.
Where is it located? All over Florence, the ZTL zone in particular will be closed off to all cars and will become pedestrian for one night. This means one important thing, plan to leave the car at home unless your a real masochist who loves traffic and frustration. Buses (6, 14, 17, 22, 23 and 37 ) should run until at least 4am and after that normal bus schedules start at about half after 5am. Check here for bus-related updates here http://www.ataf.net/it/novita-e-comunicati/novita-sul-servizio.aspx?idC=89&LN=it-IT.
Apparently this years theme is … white. Very creative I know but according to the official site, all that was said in their video was to wear white… Not the best idea when you think of all the masses of people walking, eating and drinking and potential for mishaps and the fact that it may quite possibly rain. Nevertheless if you want to get into the spirit of things, don some white clothes that you don’t mind spilling something on and your ready to go (to complete the look you can head to the Casa della Creativita where there will be professional theater make-up artists on hand to make you even more brilliantly in-tuned to this years theme.
Events this year include:
Concerts (obviously all over the city, those sensitive to sound best stay home as just imagine lots of noise coming from every direction).
- Piazza della Repubblica: ‘From Chicago to Florence’ merging soul with Firenze, funky jazz will be playing from 10pm-5am
- Museo Orsanmichele “White night waiting to see America” Orchestra directed by Maestro Giuseppe Lanzetta from 10:30pm-1am
- Loggia del Porcellino (where you can rub the boar’s nose by H&M) Paolo Baglioni quintet: Balkan music and surroundings 9pm-4am
- Basilica of San Lorenzo – square: Blow up quintet/ Concert-reading musical performance theater-7:30pm- 9:30pm. Musical from 10pm-12am, Voice and music: traditional songs from various the countries around the world 1am-3am.
- Piazza Strozzi: Music in the blank spaces- Laboratory for creative play and construction of musical instruments. Followed by concerts and musical improvisations, organized by HysM, 7pm-8:30pm , from 8:30pm-10pm there will be ‘Chimango “Commando Rumbero” live and a musical performance by Feather Association from 10pm- 12am. Last Minute Dirty Band featuring beat music of the sixties will perform from 12am-2am. Lastly dJ set by Stephen De Donato from 2am-5am.
- Ponte Vecchio: “Court of Lorena”. A journey through fashion and music. 18th century living in open air. 10pm-1am
- Piazza Santa Felicita “The Allophones in concert” Pop rock band Italian-Persian, 11pm-1am
- Piazza della Passera: Jazz in the piazza with the musicians from CAM (Centro Attività Musicali di Firenze) 8:30pm-10:30pm. CAM Big Band concert containing 16 elements 10:30pm-12am. Jazz concert 12am-3am.
- Piazza Santo Spirito: “Largo at the Opera” Chior and pianist 9pm-10pm. Florence Imagery and projections by the University of Florence 10:30pm-12am.
- Fondazione Salvatore Romano (Santo Spirito): “Navigating from ‘500 to ‘900”: Musical performance to celebrate navigator Amerigo Vespucci on the anniversary of his death. Vocal Ensemble from the European Academy of Florence. Director Concetta Anastasi; Pianist Francesco Romano. 10pm-11pm.
- NOF Gallery – Borgo San Frediano 17 / r: Jazz Jam session 9pm-11pm. Dre Love concert 11pm-1am. DJ Funk/Swing 1am-3am. Visual art 11pm-3am.
- Piazza Nerli: Exhibition by Overdrive, Light Gospel Choir 9pm-12am
- Giardino Torrigiani: Saxophone concert and the Caputo-Cecchi-Zampini trio by the Conservatory of Music L. Cherubini 9pm-11pm.
- Museo Bardini : Musical marathon by the Conservatory of Music L. Cherubim with the students of guitar. 8pm-12am.
- Loggia dei Lanzi “Black music in a white night” : Gospel music by the Joy Gospel Choir 7pm-9pm. Lyrical Recital , concert by NYU 9:30pm-11pm. Ensemble directed by Roberto Fabbriciani 11pm-12am. Duo of accordion and piano concert by Eugenio Milazzo and Fabio Colaceci 11pm-1:30am
- Piazza della Signoria: Overtures of Joachim Rossini: Wind Quintet Chamber Orchestra Fiorentina 9pm-10:30pm.
- Piazza San Firenze: White Swing/Electro-Swing Concert: dance by Tuballoswing 9pm-5am.
- Piazza dei Cerchi: “From folk music to popular music” : Travel literature and music by Author of the Cultural Stage : Eskimo 5pm-1am.
- Cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore: Concert of the Maggio Musicale Fiorentino featuring principal conductor Zubin Mehta – Symphony No.4
- Odeon Cinema: Tribute to American silent film masters. Free entrance.
- Oblate Library: Screening of the movie “The Blues Brothers” with background music, Altana 9pm-3am.
- Palazzo Strozzi – courtyard “Aerial Boundaries” Art by Loris Cecchini, until 1am
- Museum of Santa Maria Novella. “Green Cloister” Multimedia installation of OAC Collective 9pm-12am.
- Misericordia of Florence : “Mercy … Music, Art and photography” 8pm-12am. folklore from Belarus : Performance of the Choir “Krynichka” 10:30pm-11:30pm.
- La Murate: “the Walled” Images from the prison theater, Photo exhibition by Clara Vannucci 9pm-12am.
- Casa della Creatività: White Makeup for White night done by the same make-up artists of Maggio Musicale. Awesome!!! 8pm-11pm. Music-video project of revisiting masterpieces of art films from the Sixties and Seventies, edited by Retro Beat Collective from 9pm -12am. Wall-painting 11pm-3am.
- Auditorium di Santo Stefano at Ponte Vecchio: “R’umorismi” theater performance featuring a mime and dance. 10pm-12am.
- Ponte Santa Trinita – sidewalk side. “The white moon and the young poet” Theatrical performance by Arseniko Cultural Association 9-10pm, 10:30pm-11pm, 11:30pm-12am.
- Palazzo Pitti: Installation/Projection on the facade of Pitti 9pm-4am. Picnic in the piazza hosted by Editor in Chief de la Cynique Romantique from 9pm-4am.
- Piazza della Passera: “A Suitcase full of Stories and Music” , puppet show and storytelling by Tomas Jelinek 6pm.
- Via della Chiesa n. 36/r “A comedic gesture” : Performance art by students from the Scuola Internazionale di Creazione Teatrale HELIKOS 9pm-12am.
- Breakfast in the Palazzo Vecchio offered by Caffè Corsini with champion Italian barista Francesco Sanapo: 5:45am.
- Palazzo Vecchio : Access to the walkway every half hour, reservations required between 6pm-2am, without reservations 2am-5am. “May Dance” from 10pm-11:15pm
- Piazza Duomo: Transformation and enlightenment on stilts 10pm-12am. Traveling fashion show by Zumbi group. 10pm-11:30pm. Street band 7pm-9pm.
- Palazzo Medici Riccardi “White night of puppets” by Pupi Stac. Path through the art of puppetry and stories of fairies, ogres, princes and witches 7pm-11pm.
- Via Ricasoli, Academy of Fine Arts “The âme noir de la nuit blanche”: Music, dance, food, culture, collaboration with the Senegalese community 9pm-3am.
- Piazza Santa Croce “Tango, the culture of togetherness” Animations, exhibitions and performances by Florence Tango Club 9:30pm-3am.
- Biblioteca Nazionale Centrale di Firenze “Pinnocchio isn’t here” theatrical performance. 7pm-9pm, 11pm-12am. Galileo Hall, classical piano concert by the Conservatory of Music L. Cherubini of Florence
- Pergola Theater: Free dance lessons by Rosanna Brocanello, Opus Cultural Association Ballet 10:30pm-11:30pm. Guided tours of the dark secrets of Pergola, by Riccardo Ventrella 7:30pm-8:30pm (must make reservation) , Visits of the Phantom of the Pergola: Guided tours for adults, 11pm-12am (must make reservation).
- Synagogue “Night at the Synagogue” Guided tours 9:30pm-12am, Last admission at 11:15pm.
- Piazza Santa Maria Novella. Slow food market 6pm-5am accompanied by various concerts (orchestra, percussion and then Jazz).
Please note that many museums will have late opening hours and are free, until around Midnight ( Palazzo Vecchio will be open all night so take the opportunity to check out this year’s hottest art mystery in person ). You can check the list here http://www.insonniacreativa.it/, there is also a pretty impressive amount of activities for children (albeit ones who stay up a little later than normal). I didn’t list them here but they are on the PDF that you can access clicking the link above.
It sounds like they are quite organized this year and I am excited to see some of these events in person, it’s the one night when the entire city just comes together, everyone in great spirits and having fun. You can’t beat it!