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Articles by: I. I.

  • Events: Reports

    Open Roads: New Italian Cinema 2016


    The 2016 edition strikes a satisfying balance between emerging talents and esteemed veterans, including four feature debuts—the lyrical coming-of-age tale Arianna by Carlo Lavagna, Adriano Valerio’s poetic Banat, starring I Am Love’s Edoardo Gabriellini, and the heart-felt satire God Willing, winner of the Audience Award at last year’s Tokyo International Film Festival and the first feature for first-time director Edoardo Falcone—plus the latest from Gianni Zanasi (The Complexity of Happiness) and Vincenzo Marra (First Light), and the final work from late cult director Claudio Caligari, Don’t Be Bad, Italy’s submission for the 2015 Best Foreign Language Oscar.

     

    This year also marks the 40th anniversary of Ettore Scola’s brilliant satirical tragedy Ugly, Dirty and Bad, for which he won the Best Director award at Cannes in 1976. Starring the great Nino Manfredi as a patriarch who refuses to share the payout of an insurance policy with his outrageous family, the film will screen in a beautiful new digital restoration at a special anniversary screening.Istituto Luce Cinecittà and the Film Society of Lincoln Center announce the complete lineup for Open Roads: New Italian Cinema, June 2-8. For 16 years, Open Roads has proudly offered North American audiences the most diverse and extensive lineup of contemporary Italian films available. As always, the series includes both commercial and independent fare, ranging from a vérité documentary to a superhero movie, outrageous comedies to gripping dramas, with seven North American premieres and in-person appearances by many of the filmmakers.

    Other notable films include Gabriele Mainetti’s gritty superhero anti-blockbuster They Call Me Jeeg, winner of seven David di Donatello Awards (Italy’s top film honors): the witty relationship comedy Solo by writer-director-star Laura Morante (North American premiere); Claudio Cupellini’s torrid love saga The Beginners (North American premiere); the Dardenne Brothers–produced Long Live the Bride by Ascanio Celestini (North American premiere); Maria Sole Tognazzi’s lesbian romantic comedy Me, Myself and Her; Gianluca De Serio & Massimiliano De Serio’s River Memories (North American premiere), a vérité portrait of a Turin shantytown; and revered documentary filmmaker Gianfranco Pannone’s The Smallest Army in the World (North American premiere), paired with the premiere of the short documentary Viva Ingrid!, about Ingrid Bergman’s years in Italy, directed by Alessandro (grandson of Roberto) Rossellini (North American premiere).

    Open Roads: New Italian Cinema is co-presented by the c. Organized by Dennis Lim and Dan Sullivan, the Film Society of Lincoln Center; and by Carla Cattani, Griselda Guerrasio and Monique Catalino, Istituto Luce Cinecittà.



     

    FILMS & DESCRIPTIONS
    All screenings take place at the Walter Reade Theater (165 West 65th Street) unless otherwise noted
     
    40th Anniversary Screening
    Ugly, Dirty and Bad / Brutti, sporchi e cattivi
    Ettore Scola, Italy, 1976, 115m
    Italian with English subtitles
    A master of the commedia all’italiana, Ettore Scola won Best Director 40 years ago at the Cannes Film Festival for this outrageous “satirical tragedy” about a sub-proletariat household in Rome. The sprawling extended Mazzatella family lives shoulder to shoulder in a shack that overlooks a busy highway. In an extraordinary comic performance, the great Nino Manfredi stars as Giacinto, the grizzled old patriarch who has received a one-million-lire insurance payout for the loss of his left eye—money he refuses to share with any of the two-dozen children, grandchildren, and assorted other relatives who share his cramped abode. Soon enough, the family members are plotting their revenge, only to discover that Giacinto has no plans of going gently into that good night. Returning to the screen in a beautiful new digital restoration, Scola’s film contains a pitch-perfect blend of hilarity and brutality, which amounts to a brilliant portrait of squalor and cynicism unlike any other. A Film Movement release. New digital restoration!
    Saturday, June 4, 1:00pm
    Tuesday, June 7, 8:00pm*
    *Venue: Elinor Bunin Munroe Film Center, 144 West 65th Street
     
    Arianna
    Carlo Lavagna, Italy, 2015, 84m
    Italian with English subtitles
    “I was born twice. Actually, three times.” So begins director Carlo Lavagna’s feature debut, a beguiling and lyrical coming-of-age story centered on timely and timeless questions about gender, adulthood, family, and self-knowledge. Unfolding on an idyllic lakeshore in the Italian countryside, the film features first-time actress Ondina Quadri as the young woman of the title who, years after leaving, returns with her parents to her early-childhood home for a summer retreat. While there, she embarks on a profoundly personal emotional journey, spurred on by enigmatic memories and present-day desires, and gradually sheds light on secrets from her past that will transform her relationships and understanding of herself. An Uncork’d Entertainment release.
    Sunday, June 5, 3:30pm (Q&A with Carlo Lavagna, Chiara Barzini and Ondina Quadri)
    Wednesday, June 8, 4:30pm (Introduction by Chiara Barzini)
     
    Banat (Il Viaggio)
    Adriano Valerio, Italy/Romania/Bulgaria/Republic of Macedonia, 2015, 85m
    English, Italian, and Romanian with English subtitles
    In the Italian city of Bari, Ivo (I Am Love’s Edoardo Gabbriellini), an unemployed agronomist, is moving out of his apartment and preparing to take a job in Romania, just as Clara (Elena Radonicich), a newly single shipbuilder, is moving in. Though the two cross paths for only a day, it’s the beginning of a surprising journey—both geographic and emotional—for them both as she eventually follows him to Romania, where they set about trying to start a new life together on a hardscrabble farm. Beautifully blending realism with moments of quiet poetry, the promising feature debut from Adriano Valerio is a sensitively observed study of cross-cultural exchange and souls in transition.
    Friday, June 3, 1:00pm (Q&A with Adriano Valerio)
    Wednesday, June 8, 6:30pm
     
    The Beginners / Alaska
    Claudio Cupellini, Italy/France, 2015, 125m
    Italian and French with English subtitles
    This torrid saga of money, sex, and violence is a wild, careening joyride. When Fausto (Elio Germano), an Italian man living in France, meets Nadine (Astrid Bergès-Frisbey), an aspiring model, it ignites an obsessive, years-long case of l’amour fou that takes the couple from the highest highs to the lowest lows, from prison to power and fortune, and from love to hate and everything in between. Driven by the explosive chemistry between Germano and Bergès-Frisbey and backed by a soundtrack that skips from indie rock to Motown to opera, The Beginners is a breathless, one-of-a-kind love story that keeps the shocking surprises and hairpin turns coming. North American Premiere
    Friday, June 3, 8:45pm (Q&A with Claudio Cupellini)
    Wednesday, June 8, 2:00pm
     
    Call Me Francesco – The Pope / Chiamatemi Francesco – Il Papa della gente
    Daniele Luchetti, Italy, 2015, 98m
    Spanish with English subtitles
    This unsentimental biopic forgoes hagiography to delve into the darkest chapter of the life of the man the world now knows as Pope Francis. Before he was the leader of the Catholic Church, he was Jorge Mario Bergoglio, a young priest living in Buenos Aires. As he rises through the ranks of the church, Bergoglio (played by The Motorcycle Diaries star Rodrigo de la Serna) finds himself frequently at odds with the brutal military dictatorship that ruled Argentina in the 1970s, a potentially perilous situation that forces him to make some tough moral choices. Told with the verve of a political thriller, Call Me Francesco – The Pope is a humanizing look at the experiences that shaped one of the world’s most influential men.
    Sunday, June 5, 6:00pm
     
    The Complexity of Happiness / La felicità è un sistema complesso
    Gianni Zanasi, Italy, 2015, 114m
    English and Italian with English subtitles
    In Gianni Zanasi’s latest feature, Valerio Mastandrea stars as Enrico Giusti, a comfortably unattached businessman whose empathy and compassion are put to the test when, returning home one night from a business trip, he finds a lonely Israeli exchange student (Hadas Yaron) waiting in his apartment, abandoned there by his commitment-averse younger brother. Just as he’s beginning to navigate this unexpected turn in his personal life, Enrico’s professional life will take on its own unforeseen complications when he is named co-director of a family-run corporation, along with the two recently orphaned, adolescent children of the company’s founders. Anchored by Mastandrea’s warm, subtly generous lead performance, this film quietly asks what it means to make a positive difference in the lives of others, and suggests that kindness and simple human decency can go a long way in improving the lives of everyone they touch.
    Saturday, June 4, 3:30pm (Q&A with Gianni Zanasi)
     
    Don’t Be Bad / Non essere cattivo
    Claudio Caligari, Italy, 2015, 102m
    Italian with English subtitles
    The final film from the late cult director Claudio Caligari (Toxic Love) is a gritty, hard-hitting crime saga set in Ostia (the outskirts of Rome immortalized by Pasolini) in the 1990s. Best friends Cesare (Luca Marinelli) and Vittorio (Alessandro Borghi) are petty drug dealers whose favorite pastimes are getting high and drinking themselves into oblivion. But when Vittorio endeavors to turn his life around, the self-destructive Cesare spirals further downward. Submitted as Italy’s candidate for the 2015 Best Foreign Language Oscar, Don’t Be Bad evocatively captures the cocaine-fueled, neon-nightclub highs and the grim, morning-after lows of life in the fast lane.
    Thursday, June 2, 8:30pm
    Monday, June 6, 4:15pm
     
    First Light / La prima luce
    Vincenzo Marra, Italy, 2015, 104m
    Spanish and Italian with English subtitles
    This gripping human drama tackles a complex issue—an international custody battle—with emotion and suspense. One of Italy’s best-known stars, Riccardo Scamarcio, plays Marco, a lawyer with a short fuse but an undeniable love for the son he has with his long-term partner Martina (Daniela Ramirez). Alienated in Italy and desperately unhappy in her relationship, Martina longs to return home to South America. One day, while Marco is away, she does the unthinkable: books a one-way plane ticket and absconds with her son back to Chile. What begins as an absorbing relationship drama develops into a low-key thriller as the desperate Marco travels halfway across the world to find his child. Director and erstwhile documentarian Vincenzo Marra lends a vivid realism to this compelling look at the lengths a parent will go for his child. Winner of a Francesco Pasinetti Award at the Venice Film Festival.
    Friday, June 3, 3:30pm (Q&A with Vincenzo Marra)
    Wednesday, June 8, 8:30pm
     
    God Willing / Se Dio vuole
    Edoardo Falcone, Italy, 2015, 84m
    Italian with English subtitles
    The great “faith vs. reason” debate gets a comedic workout in this by turns goofy and heartfelt satire. Tommaso (Marco Giallini), a famed surgeon, is thrown for a loop when his son Andrea (Enrico Oetiker) informs him that he wants to ditch his medical studies and become a priest. A strict atheist who believes the boy is squandering his potential, Tommaso embarks on a harebrained campaign to discredit the charismatic, motorcycle-riding evangelist (Alessandro, son of Vittorio, Gassman) influencing Andrea—but finds his own values being transformed in the process. Far from preachy, God Willing gently lampoons bourgeois vapidity, while offering a fresh perspective on the role of spirituality in the modern world. North American Premiere.
    Saturday, June 4, 6:30pm (Q&A with Edoardo Falcone)
     
     
    Long Live the Bride / Viva la sposa
    Ascanio Celestini, Italy/France/Belgium, 2015, 87m
    Italian with English subtitles
    The Dardenne Brothers co-produced this engagingly offbeat character study, which, like the acclaimed auteurs’ own work, is set on the lowest rungs and in the outermost margins of society. The film’s sinister humor and subtle surrealism, however, belong entirely to writer-director-star Ascanio Celestini. He plays Nicola, an aimless alcoholic who (barely) supports himself doing (wildly inappropriate) children’s theater, but primarily spends his time wandering the outskirts of Rome in his big red van and consorting with various other misfits: a fellow barfly (Alba Rohrwacher), a prostitute (Veronica Cruciani), and a con man (Salvatore Striano) who teaches Nicola the tricks of his trade. Their intersecting lives form a picaresque, ultimately poignant portrait of people on the edge. North American Premiere
    Tuesday, June 7, 6:00pm*
    *Venue: Elinor Bunin Munroe Film Center, 144 West 65th Street
     
    Me, Myself and Her / Io e lei
    Maria Sole Tognazzi, Italy, 2015, 102m
    Italian with English subtitles
    On the surface, Federica (Margherita Buy) and Marina (Sabrina Ferilli) appear to have the perfect relationship, sharing a posh apartment in Rome, working dream jobs (architect and restaurateur, respectively) by day, and cozying up on the couch to watch episodes of Top of the Lake by night. But when retired actress Marina suddenly decides to get back into the movies and Federica—still questioning her sexuality—pursues a fling with a man, their commitment to each other is put to the test. Blending light-as-a-soufflé comedy, postcard-perfect views of Italy, and witty observations on the challenges that all couples face, this irresistible romance is as refreshing as a Mediterranean vacation. A Wolfe Releasing release.
    Thursday, June 2, 6:00pm (Q&A with Maria Sole Tognazzi)
    Tuesday, June 7, 1:30pm
     
    River Memories / I ricordi del fiume
    Gianluca De Serio & Massimiliano De Serio, Italy, 2015, 96m
    Romanian and Italian with English subtitles
    Along a river in Turin, over 1,000 people live in a sprawling makeshift shantytown, a vibrant multiethnic melting pot slated to be razed by the government. As some residents are relocated to public housing and others are left dispossessed, this vérité documentary captures everyday moments from the last days of life in the community—children playing amid the rubble, a family praying fervently at home, revelry at a late-night fireside gathering. A haunting, strikingly shot work of anthropological preservation,River Memories is an elegiac record of a vanishing way of life. North American Premiere
    Sunday, June 5, 1:00pm (Q&A with Gianluca De Serio & Massimiliano De Serio)
     
    The Smallest Army in the World / L’esercito più piccolo del mondo
    Gianfranco Pannone, Italy, 2015, 80m
    Italian, German, and French with English subtitles
    The renowned documentarian Gianfranco Pannone turns his camera on “the smallest army in the world”: the Pontifical Swiss Guard, a centuries-old military unit comprised of young Swiss soldiers who are stationed at the Vatican and tasked with guarding the Pope. The film follows Leo and René as they bid farewell to their families in Switzerland and embark on the first months of their assignment in Rome. Under Pannone’s inquisitive and sensitive gaze, the young men are fitted for customary striped uniforms, train in the drills and procedures of the Guard, practice their Italian-language skills, and contemplate the cultural and personal significance of participating in a religious and military tradition that has been sustained over hundreds of years in the Church’s history. Leo, René, and their fellow guardsmen are compelling and endearing subjects, and the documentary doubles as a joyous love letter to the sights and sounds of the ancient city. North American Premiere
    Sunday, June 5, 8:30pm
    Screening with:
    Viva Ingrid!
    Alessandro Rossellini, Italy, 2015, 20m
    English, Italian, and French with English subtitles
    This charming ode to the late Ingrid Bergman tells the story of her time spent in Italy, beginning with the production of her first film with Roberto Rossellini (the director’s grandfather), and ending with the couple’s separation eight years later—narrated via a collage of home movies, interviews, newsreel footage, and scenes from her films. North American Premiere
    Sunday, June 5, 8:30pm (Q&A with Gianfranco Pannone)
     
    Solo / Assolo
    Laura Morante, Italy, 2016, 97m
    Italian with English subtitles
    The multitalented Laura Morante wrote, directed, and stars in this snappy relationship comedy, which plays like a Woody Allen sex farce told from the female point of view. Morante is Flavia, a neurotic middle-aged woman and human doormat, who clings to her two remarried ex-husbands while letting her female friends walk all over her. With the help of her no-nonsense therapist (Piera Degli Esposti), the timid Flavia confronts her fear of being alone and sets out to reclaim her life. Boasting a delightfully deadpan lead performance and bursting with playful stylistic touches—including surreal fantasy sequences and fourth-wall-breaking direct addresses—Solo is a witty, wise, and empowering portrait of a late bloomer coming into her own. North American Premiere.
    Friday, June 3, 6:15pm (Q&A with Laura Morante)
    Monday, June 6, 2:00pm
     
    They Call Me Jeeg ​/ Lo chiamavano Jeeg Robot
    Gabriele Mainetti, Italy, 2015, 112m
    Italian with English subtitles
    After a plunge into Rome’s toxic Tiber River, Enzo (Claudio Santamaria), a porn-addicted petty criminal, finds himself transformed into an indestructible, superhuman strongman. Against his own instincts, he becomes something of an avenging angel: the protector of an emotionally fragile, anime-obsessed young woman (who believes he is the robot hero of the 1970s manga seriesSteel Jeeg) and the nemesis of a sadistic, germophobic gangster (Luca Marinelli). This gritty, grimy take on the superhero film is the antidote to Hollywood-slick blockbusters. It’s bloody, bruising, bone-crunching, and a total blast. Winner of seven David di Donatello awards including Best Debut Director. An Uncork’d Entertainment release.
    Saturday, June 4, 8:45pm (Q&A with Gabriele Mainetti)
    Tuesday, June 7, 3:30pm
     
    FILM SOCIETY OF LINCOLN CENTER

    Founded in 1969 to celebrate American and international cinema, the Film Society of Lincoln Center works to recognize established and emerging filmmakers, support important new work, and to enhance the awareness, accessibility, and understanding of the moving image. The Film Society produces the renowned New York Film Festival, a curated selection of the year’s most significant new film work, and presents or collaborates on other annual New York City festivals including Art of the Real, Dance on Camera, Film Comment Selects, Human Rights Watch Film Festival, New Directors/New Films, New York African Film Festival, New York Asian Film Festival, New York Jewish Film Festival, Open Roads: New Italian Cinema, Rendez-Vous with French Cinema, and Scary Movies. In addition to publishing the award-winning Film Comment magazine, the Film Society recognizes an artist’s unique achievement in film with the prestigious Chaplin Award, whose 2016 recipient is Morgan Freeman. The Film Society’s state-of-the-art Walter Reade Theater and the Elinor Bunin Munroe Film Center, located at Lincoln Center, provide a home for year-round programs and the New York City film community.

    The Film Society receives generous, year-round support from American Airlines, The New York Times, HBO, Stella Artois, The Kobal Collection, Variety, Loews Regency Hotel, the National Endowment for the Arts, and the New York State Council on the Arts. For more information, visit www.filmlinc.org and follow @filmlinc on Twitter.
     
    ISTITUTO LUCE CINECITTA
    Istituto Luce Cinecittà is the state-owned company whose main shareholder is the Italian Ministry for Culture subsidizing its activities on an annual basis.
    Istituto Luce Cinecittà holds one of the most important European film and photographic archive in which materials are collected and digitally categorized, including its own productions and materials, derived from private collections and acquisitions by a variety of sources. It is the largest audiovisual collection concerning the history of the twentieth century and it has also been a candidate by UNESCO-Italy to the membership registration in the registry ‘Memory of the World.’
     
    Istituto Luce Cinecittà cooperates with major film festivals such as Cannes, Berlin, Buenos Aires, Toronto, Locarno, New York, London, etc., by organizing national selections, guaranteeing the presence of Italian films and artists in the various festivals, and by providing multifunctional spaces to help the promotion of our cinematography and it is the reference place for all Italian and foreign operators. It is also involved with the direct organization of numerous Film Festival around the world: The Festival of Italian Cinema in Tokyo, Open Roads: New Italian Cinema in New York, London’s Cinema Made in Italy, Mittelcinemafest, and The Festival of Italian Cinema in Barcelona, Istanbul, and Buenos Aires.
     
    Istituto Luce Cinecittà also owns a film library, Cineteca, containing around 3000 titles of the most significant Italian film productions, subtitled in foreign languages, which serve in promoting Italian culture at major national and international institutes around the world. In collaboration with the Italian Ministry for the Foreign Affairs, restorations and new prints are added every year.
     
    Istituto Luce Cinecittà is responsible for editing a daily on-line news magazine: CinecittaNews which delivers the latest breaking news on the principal activities involving Italian Cinema as well as its developing legislative and institutional aspects.
     
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    Single tickets are $14; $11 for students and seniors (62+); and $9 for Film Society members. See more and save with the $99 All Access Pass or the 3+-film discount package. Visit filmlinc.org for more information. 

     

  • Facts & Stories

    NYU Langone Medical Center Raised $7 Million at its annual Violet Ball

    NYU Langone Medical Center raised $7 million at its annual Violet Ball, held at The Metropolitan Museum of Art on 5th Avenue in New York City last night. Paolo Fresco, former chairman of Fiat and former executive vice chairman at General Electric, was honored at the event for his visionary leadership in establishing NYU Langone’s Marlene and Paolo Fresco Institute for Parkinson’s and Movement Disorders in the fall of 2015.

    Proceeds raised at the gala will be used to attract and retain brilliant young minds through scholarships, advance the medical center’s bold vision, and strengthen the medical center’s role as a resource for the diverse communities of New York and beyond.

    Addressing an audience of over 450 guests, Robert I. Grossman, MD, the Saul J. Farber Dean and CEO of NYU Langone Medical Center said, “Paolo Fresco is a man who has gone above and beyond to ensure that our past will be prologue to the extraordinary.” 

    Mr. Fresco is committed to promoting excellence in patient care, education, and scientific discovery for Parkinson’s and movement disorders here in the United States—at the Fresco Institute headquarters in New York City--and in his native Italy. Through a first-of-its kind collaboration with the Neuroscience Institute at NYU Langone and the clinical and scientific community in Italy, the Fresco Institute is promoting international scientific collaboration to improve treatments and find cures.

    The Fresco Institute has made significant progress towards its goal of becoming the world’s top Parkinson’s and movement disorders institution, including:

      The recruitment of prominent young basic scientist Nicolas Tritsch, PhD, to the Neuroscience Institute at NYU Langone. Dr. Tritsch is working to identify novel Parkinson’s treatments through the study of the functional organization of neural circuits that orchestrate voluntary motor actions.
    The launch in the summer of 2016 of the Fresco Institute’s Network of Excellence that will award collaborative grants to up to four Parkinson’s and movement disorders centers throughout Italy, with a goal of fostering international clinical and scientific collaboration.
    The launch in the summer of 2016 of a unique fellowship program for up to four young Italian clinicians and researchers to train with the teams at the Fresco Institute and the Neuroscience Institute at NYU Langone.
      A recently-finalized collaboration with The Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research to launch its highly regarded Fox Trial Finder (FTF) program the Fresco Institute’s Fresco Network of Excellence in Italy.

    “I am incredibly honored to be here tonight,” said Mr. Fresco, who has been a trustee of NYU Langone since 2013. “But more importantly, I am excited for the great advances the Fresco Institute will make as a result of our growing international program. My hope is that this initiative will continue on indefinitely, helping those who suffer from movement disorders.”

    Underwriting support for this year’s Violet Ball was provided by Nancy and Arthur Calcagnini, Lisa Pevaroff-Cohn and Gary Cohn, Lori and Laurence D. Fink, and Elaine and Ken Langone, chair of NYU Langone’s Board of Trustees, and the Tisch family. Mr. Langone also served as Gala Chair, and Dr. Grossman was the Gala Physician Committee Chair. 

    Guests included Nancy and Larry Bossidy, Marjorie and Walter Buckley, Barbara and David Calhoun, Elisabeth J. Cohen, MD, Isabel and Francesco Genuardi, Trudy Elbaum Gottesman and Robert Gottesman, Sheree and Marc Holliday, Julia Koch, Ofer Nemirovsky, Laurie Perlmutter, Klara and Larry Silverstein, Leonard Tow, Gwen Towns and Representative Ed Towns, Patty Newburger and Bradley Wechsler, Suzy and Jack Welch, and Beatrice and Anthony Welters.

    About NYU Langone Medical Center:  

    NYU Langone Medical Center, a world-class, patient-centered, integrated academic medical center, is one of the nation’s premier centers for excellence in clinical care, biomedical research, and medical education. Located in the heart of Manhattan, NYU Langone is composed of four hospitals—Tisch Hospital, its flagship acute care facility; Rusk Rehabilitation; the Hospital for Joint Diseases, the Medical Center’s dedicated inpatient orthopaedic hospital; and Hassenfeld Children’s Hospital, a comprehensive pediatric hospital supporting a full array of children’s health services across the Medical Center. Also part of NYU Langone is NYU School of Medicine, which since 1841 has trained thousands of physicians and scientists who have helped to shape the course of medical history, and the Laura and Isaac Perlmutter Cancer Center, a National Cancer Institute–designated cancer center. The Medical Center’s tri-fold mission to serve, teach, and discover is achieved 365 days a year through the seamless integration of a culture devoted to excellence in patient care, education, and research. For more information, go to www.NYULangone.org,

     

  • Events: Reports

    Lincoln Center Pays Tribute to Anna Magnani



    The Film Society of Lincoln Center and ​​Istituto Luce Cinecittà have announced the lineup for La Magnani, a series dedicated to the film work of iconic Italian actress Anna Magnani, May 18 – June 1. The 24-title retrospective will screen entirely on 35mm and 16mm.


    Anna Magnani’s blend of fiery passion, earthy humor, and unvarnished naturalism made her the symbol of postwar Italian cinema. Launched to worldwide superstardom through her indelible turn in Roberto Rossellini’s Rome Open City, she represented something startlingly new to audiences accustomed to movie-star glamour: here, in all its raw, gritty glory, was life. Equally adept at drama and comedy, she could harness her explosive emotional intensity to move an audience to laughter, tears, or both at once.


    La Magnani highlights the actress’s illustrious international career, including powerhouse performances for directors like Rossellini, Luchino Visconti (Bellissima), Pier Paolo Pasolini (Mamma Roma), Federico Fellini (L’amore and Roma), Sidney Lumet (The Fugitive Kind), George Cukor (Wild Is the Wind), William Dieterle (Volcano), Mario Monicelli (The Passionate Thief), and Jean Renoir (The Golden Coach).


    This diverse survey of Magnani’s filmography also features a number of the actress’s rarely screened early performances, including her third-ever on-screen appearance, as a scheming maid opposite a young Vittorio De Sica in Mario Mattoli’s Full Speed; as a gold-digging showgirl in De Sica’s Doctor, Beware; showing off her distinctive vocal style as an enchanting nightclub performer in Carlo Ludovico Bragaglia’s La vita è bella; as well as her final roles in Alfredo Giannetti’s historical drama 1870—the only time she appeared opposite Marcello Mastroianni—and Fellini’s Roma, her farewell to film.


    The series is the first stop of a traveling retrospective organized by Istituto Luce Cinecittà that will continue at film institutions around the United States, including the Gene Siskel Film Center in Chicago, the Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive, the Castro Theatre in San Francisco, the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, and The Wexner Center in Columbus.


    Co-presented by the Film Society of Lincoln Center and ​​Istituto Luce Cinecittà​​. Organized by Florence Almozini and Dan Sullivan, the Film Society; and by Camilla Cormanni and Paola Ruggiero, Luce Cinecittà. Presented in association with the Ministry of Culture of Italy.​


    Tickets go on sale Thursday, May 5. See more for less with a 3+ Film Package or an All Access Pass.




    FILMS 

    1870 / Correva l’anno di grazia 1870
    Alfredo Giannetti, Italy, 1972, 35mm, 116m

    Italian with English subtitles

    In her final starring role, Magnani was cast alongside legendary leading man Marcello Mastroianni for the only time. Set amid the upheaval of the Risorgimento era, this stirring historical drama stars Mastroianni as an Italian nationalist who is imprisoned for his opposition to the church, leaving his wife (Magnani) to join the rebel cause. Though originally made for television, there is nothing small-screen about 1870, which boasts impressive attention to period detail, an Ennio Morricone score, and, of course, mighty performances from two icons of Italian cinema. 35mm print from Istituto Luce Cinecittà.

    Monday, May 30, 4:00pm

    Wednesday, June 1, 6:30pm

    L’amore

    Roberto Rossellini, Italy, 1948, 35mm, 69m


    Italian with English subtitles

    Roberto Rossellini’s twin tribute to Magnani offers a one-two punch of tour-de-force performances from the actress. In the first part, adapted from a theatrical monologue by Jean Cocteau, she’s a woman hanging on the telephone line for dear life as she pleads with a lover who has just ended their relationship—a veritable aria of desperation and despair. In the second, a story by Federico Fellini, she stars as a peasant who has a vision of Saint Joseph—and then finds herself mysteriously pregnant. When it was released in New York, the latter was condemned as “sacrilegious,” leading to a landmark censorship battle that went all the way to the Supreme Court. Far from blasphemous, it’s a luminous statement of faith and spirituality, featuring one of Magnani’s most moving performances. 35mm print from Istituto Luce Cinecittà.

    Friday, May 27, 9:15pm

    Saturday, May 28, 2:00pm

    …And the Wild Women / Nella città l’inferno

    Renato Castellani, Italy/France, 1959, 35mm, 106m


    Italian with English subtitles

    Sparks fly as Magnani plays opposite another legend of Italian cinema—Giulietta Masina—in this explosive women-in-prison drama. Masina is the naïve young innocent wrongly convicted, Magnani the volatile hardened convict who corrupts her. Despite its title, the film is less an exploitation shocker than a gripping character study, with the interplay between Magnani’s livewire intensity and Masina’s gentle guilelessness generating real dramatic tension. Each woman gets ample opportunity to shine, but the best moment belongs to the electrifying Magnani. The sight of her shimmying down a cellblock while shouting “rock and roll!” is worth the price of admission alone. 35mm print from Istituto Luce Cinecittà.

    Friday, May 20, 9:00pm

    Sunday, May 22, 2:00pm

    Angelina / L’onorevole Angelina

    Luigi Zampa, Italy, 1947, 35mm, 90m


    Italian with English subtitles

    Magnani delivers a powerhouse performance in this rousing, up-with-the-people slice of neorealism. She stars as a slum-dwelling mother of five who is thrust into the spotlight when she leads a band of women against a black-market peddler who is withholding their food rations. From there she finds herself the instigator of an all-out, female-powered political revolution that pits her against a coterie of capitalist fat cats. Fascinating for the way it flirts with proto-feminist politics, Angelina gives Magnani a role tailor-made for her brand of fiery magnetism and for which she was rewarded with a Best Actress award at the Venice Film Festival. 35mm print from Istituto Luce Cinecittà.

    Sunday, May 22, 6:45pm

    Thursday, May 26, 2:30pm*

    *Venue: Elinor Bunin Munroe Film Center, 144 West 65th Street

    The Bandit / Il bandito

    Alberto Lattuada, Italy, 1946, 35mm, 78m


    English, Italian, and German with English subtitles

    Magnani is a fierce femme fatale in this striking neorealist noir. Upon returning to Italy from the war, ex-POW Ernesto (the “Italian Errol Flynn” Amedeo Nazzari) takes stock of the shattered pieces of his life in bombed-out Turin. When he’s unwittingly implicated in a murder, he’s taken in by a crime ring presided over by Magnani’s glamorous gangster’s moll. But Ernesto’s idealism—he fashions himself a gun-toting Robin Hood, stealing from the rich and giving to the poor—doesn’t sit well with the rest of the outfit. Director Alberto Lattuada imbues this socially conscious crime saga with a shadowy style and a foreboding fatalism. Memorable set piece: a nightclub robbery set to a drum solo. 35mm print from Istituto Luce Cinecittà.

    Monday, May 30, 9:15pm

    Wednesday, June 1, 4:45pm


    Bellissima

    Luchino Visconti, Italy, 1952, 35mm, 108m


    Italian with English subtitles

    This early gem from melodrama maestro Luchino Visconti deftly blends showbiz satire with heart-tugging pathos. When Cinecittà Studios puts out a casting call for a new child actress, they’re flooded with starry-eyed stage mothers and their talentless tots, among them Magnani’s working-class Roman nurse who becomes obsessed with making her (rather indifferent) daughter a star. As in similar Hollywood-plays-itself melodramas (The Bad and the Beautiful, Sunset Boulevard), Bellissima both romanticizes the power of celluloid dreams while delivering a cuttingly cynical takedown of the movie industry. It ultimately achieves real poignancy through Magnani’s affecting performance as a mother whose desperate drive to succeed is outweighed only by her love for her child. 35mm print from Istituto Luce Cinecittà.

    Wednesday, May 18, 4:15pm

    Sunday, May 29, 8:30pm

    Doctor, Beware / Teresa Venerdì

    Vittorio De Sica, Italy, 1941, 35mm, 92m


    Italian with English subtitles

    Before he went neorealist a few years later, Vittorio De Sica brought his compassionate sensibility to this sweetly romantic screwball farce. He stars as a harried pediatrician (his prescription for any and all ailments: castor oil) juggling a failing medical practice with the advances of three women: an airheaded heiress (Irasema Dilián), a lovesick orphan (Adriana Benetti), and a gold-digging showgirl (Magnani). Though she only appears in a handful of scenes, Magnani handily steals them all (witness her sleepwalking disdainfully through a ridiculous dance number). De Sica himself called it the actress’s “true first film.” 35mm print from Istituto Luce Cinecittà.

    Sunday, May 29, 6:30pm

    Monday, May 30, 2:00pm

    Down with Misery / Abbasso la miseria!

    Gennaro Righelli, Italy, 1945, 35mm, 90m


    Italian with English subtitles

    Released the same year as Magnani’s international breakthrough, Rome Open City, this tenderhearted comedy charts the mayhem that ensues when an honest truck driver (Nino Besozzi) unwittingly gets mixed up in black-market smuggling and winds up adopting a streetwise orphan—much to the chagrin of his no-nonsense wife (Magnani). Something like a neorealist fairy tale, Down with Misery roots its charming wisp of a story in the none-too-rosy economic reality of postwar Italy to create a bittersweet look at downtrodden people striving for a better tomorrow. 35mm print from Istituto Luce Cinecittà.

    Saturday, May 21, 6:30pm

    Tuesday, May 24, 2:30pm

    Fellini’s Roma

    Federico Fellini, Italy/France, 1972, 35mm, 128m


    English, Italian, French, German, Spanish, and Latin with English subtitles

    Magnani’s farewell to film was this fitting send-off from Federico Fellini, a sprawling, kaleidoscopic tribute to the city that the actress embodied. Told in a delirious, stream-of-consciousness rush, it’s a hallucinatory trip through the director’s memories and fantasies, the whorehouses, palazzi, and catacombs of Rome both past and present. Among the dazzlingly surreal images: an epic nighttime traffic jam filmed through the gauzy wash of rain-streaked windshields; an outré Catholic fashion show of au courant papal wear; and a haunting journey into the ancient tunnels of a vanished Roman Empire. What emerges is a funny, outrageous, mystical portrait of a city both ever-changing and eternal.

    Friday, May 27, 6:30pm

    Saturday, May 28, 3:45pm

    The Fugitive Kind

    Sidney Lumet, USA, 1960, 35mm, 121m


    Magnani’s second encounter with Tennessee Williams after her triumph in The Rose Tattoo is a torrid psychodrama of lost souls and raging passions. Based on Williams’s play Orpheus Descending, The Fugitive Kind stars Marlon Brando as a guitar-playing ex-con (nicknamed Snakeskin after the jacket he wears) who drifts into a godforsaken Louisiana town where his sexual magnetism inflames the desires of a wild-child nymphomaniac (Joanne Woodward) and a vile store owner’s world-weary, long-suffering wife (Magnani). The trio of heavyweight dramatic performances—Brando smolders, Woodward simmers, and Magnani boils over—propel this Southern Gothic shocker.

    Friday, May 20, 6:30pm

    Sunday, May 22, 4:15pm

    Full Speed / Tempo massimo

    Mario Mattoli, Italy, 1934, 35mm, 78m


    Italian with English subtitles

    This comedic charmer is a sparkling example of the stylishly sophisticated entertainment that Italy produced prior to World War II. An elegant young Vittorio De Sica stars as a bookish academic, who, when a vivacious, sports-mad socialite (the single-monikered Milly) crash-lands (literally) into his life, experiences both joie de vivre and romantic complications. In one of her earliest screen appearances, Magnani—looking less like Mamma Roma and, with bobbed hair and penciled eyebrows, more like an MGM starlet—makes a strong impression as a scheming maid; even in a relatively small role the force of her irrepressible personality shines through. The cherry on top is the film’s delightful climax, an inventive, sight gag–filled homage to silent slapstick. 35mm print from Istituto Luce Cinecittà.

    Thursday, May 26, 9:00pm*

    Wednesday, June 1, 3:00pm

    *Venue: Elinor Bunin Munroe Film Center, 144 West 65th Street

    The Golden Coach / Le carrosse d’or

    Jean Renoir, France/Italy, 1952, 35mm, 103m


    English version

    Jean Renoir’s exquisite love letter to the stage stars Magnani as an actress in a touring commedia dell’arte troupe. While traveling through 18th-century Peru, she finds herself receiving romantic advances from three men: a faithful Spanish soldier (George Higgins), a dashing bullfighter (Riccardo Rioli), and a wealthy Viceroy (Duncan Lamont), who possesses the dazzling carriage of the title. Renoir’s real interest, though, is in the “show must go on” magic of the stage, the mysterious art of acting, and the interplay between fantasy and reality. The combination of elegant comedy, gorgeous color cinematography, and exquisite art direction yields what François Truffaut called “the noblest and most refined film ever made.”

    Saturday, May 28, 6:30pm

    Sunday, May 29, 2:00pm

    Tuesday, May 31, 6:30pm

    Mamma Roma

    Pier Paolo Pasolini, Italy, 1962, 35mm, 110m


    Italian with English subtitles

    In one of her defining roles, Magnani is a coarse ex-streetwalker who tries to start a new, better life in Rome for the sake of her teenage son (Ettore Garofolo)—but struggles to keep him from falling into a life of crime. Pasolini’s shattering working-class tragedy treats earthily realistic subject matter with a cool formal classicism, replete with Baroque music and visual references to Renaissance religious paintings (including a haunting re-creation of Andrea Mantegna’s Lamentation of Christ). The result is a subversive mix of the sacred and the profane that pushed neorealism in bold new directions.

    Wednesday, May 18, 8:45pm

    Saturday, May 21, 2:00pm

    The Passionate Thief / Risate di gioia

    Mario Monicelli, Italy, 1960, 35mm, 106m


    Italian with English subtitles

    Magnani’s funny side gets perhaps its finest showcase in this freewheeling, snap, crackle, and pop comedy. Donning a platinum-blonde wig (“you look like Kim Novak,” remarks her companion), she tears her way gloriously through the role of a two-bit movie actress stepping out for a New Year’s Eve night on the town. En route to a party, she meets up with an old friend (comedy legend Totò) who, little does she know, is assisting a suave thief (Ben Gazzara) as he picks the pockets of revelers. Over the course of one wild night, the trio tramps all over Rome, with Magnani and Totò improvising a musical number, a send-up of La Dolce Vita’s Trevi Fountain romp, and romantic tensions building along the way. It ultimately leaves a poignant lasting impression thanks to director Monicelli’s humanistic worldview. 35mm print from Istituto Luce Cinecittà.

    Saturday, May 28, 8:45pm

    Sunday, May 29, 4:15pm

    The Peddler and the Lady / Campo de’ fiori

    Mario Bonnard, Italy, 1943, 35mm, 95m


    Italian with English subtitles

    Two years before they starred opposite each other in Rome Open City, Magnani and Aldo Fabrizi headlined this bittersweet comedy. He plays a humble fishmonger in Rome’s Campo de’ Fiori marketplace who winds up way out of his league when he begins wooing a beautiful young woman (Caterina Boratto) who’s not all she seems. Meanwhile, Magnani—in the first of the earthy everywoman roles she would become known for—provides emotional gravitas as the brash, secretly-in-love-with-him fruit seller who pulls him back down to earth. The simple premise is lent nice depth by Magnani and Fabrizi, both nimbly balancing humor and heartstring-plucking poignancy. 35mm print from Istituto Luce Cinecittà.

    Saturday, May 21, 8:30pm

    Tuesday, May 24, 4:30pm

    Mamma RomaMamma Roma

    Peddlin’ in Society / Abbasso la ricchezza!

    Gennaro Righelli, Italy, 1946, 35mm, 85m


    Italian with English subtitles

    The marvelous Magnani struts, dances (hilariously), and sings her way through this delightful satirical farce. She stars as a nouveau riche former fruit vendor who, having made a fortune on the wartime black market, leases the elegant villa of a dashing Count (Vittorio De Sica) in need of cash. But her newfound fortune and provincial naïveté make her an all-too-easy target for a parade of unscrupulous con artists. The follow-up to Gennaro Righelli’s Down with Misery, this riches-to-rags tale plays like that film in reverse, with political and class tensions never far from the surface. 35mm print from Istituto Luce Cinecittà.

    Wednesday, May 18, 2:15pm

    Wednesday, June 1, 9:00pm

    Rome Open City / Roma città aperta

    Roberto Rossellini, Italy, 1945, 35mm, 103m


    Italian, German, and Latin with English subtitles

    The film that announced both Italian neorealism and Magnani as major forces in international cinema, Rome Open City sent shock waves through the world upon its release. By taking his camera onto the rubble-strewn streets of Nazi-occupied Italy, Rossellini captured the horrors of life during wartime with an urgent, hitherto unseen immediacy, while Magnani—defiantly unglamorous, raw, and real—became the symbol of a new naturalism. She plays a mother and bride-to-be who is among a cross section of working-class Italians caught in a Nazi dragnet as the SS scours Rome for a leader in the resistance movement. More than 70 years after its arrival, Rome Open City retains its devastating power. 35mm print from Istituto Luce Cinecittà.

    Wednesday, May 18, 6:30pm

    Saturday, May 21, 4:15pm

    The Rose Tattoo

    Daniel Mann, USA, 1955, 117m


    English and Italian with English subtitles

    Magnani as a Tennessee Williams heroine yields heavy-duty dramatic fireworks in this seething saga of sexual repression. The playwright wrote the role of Serafina Delle Rose—a pious but volatile Sicilian wife and mother living in the American South—with her in mind. Enamored with a husband who is cheating on her, Serafina goes into a state of shock and denial when he dies suddenly. Her unlikely white knight is an impetuous, overgrown man-child (Burt Lancaster), and the two make as mismatched a pair of misfits as ever graced the screen. In her first Hollywood film, Magnani unleashed her hundred-proof emotional intensity in full force and was rewarded with the Best Actress Oscar. Also receiving an Academy Award was the luscious black-and-white cinematography courtesy of the great James Wong Howe. 35mm print courtesy of UCLA Film & Television Archive.

    Thursday, May 19, 6:30pm

    Friday, May 20, 4:00pm

    La sciantosa

    Alfredo Giannetti, Italy, 1971, 35mm, 92m


    Italian with English subtitles

    In one of four tour-de-force historical dramas Magnani made for Italian television in the early 1970s (all directed by Alfredo Giannetti, the Oscar-winning screenwriter of Divorce Italian Style), she dazzles as a washed-up cabaret star who receives an invitation to perform for soldiers fighting on the front lines of World War I. What the faded diva imagines to be a comeback engagement becomes a transformative experience when she is confronted with the realities of war. Magnani’s status as the living symbol of her country is concretized in the powerful image of her delivering a tear-stained rendition of the Neapolitan ballad “O surdato ’nnammurato.” 35mm print from Istituto Luce Cinecittà.

    Tuesday, May 24, 8:45pm

    Friday, May 27, 2:00pm

    The Secret of Santa Vittoria

    Stanley Kramer, USA, 1969, 35mm, 139m


    This rollicking World War II comedy, based on the best-selling novel by Robert Crichton, is a satirical look at life in Italy under the occupation. Following the fall of fascism in 1943, the bumbling, blustery peasant Bombolini (Anthony Quinn) is installed as mayor of the small village of Santa Vittoria (one constituent whose respect he doesn’t have: his strong-willed wife, played by Magnani). At first, the not-so-bright Bombolini seems like a lame-duck politician. But when the Nazis march into town, he mobilizes the citizens to protect Santa Vittoria’s most precious asset: its copious supply of wine. Beautifully shot on location outside Rome, The Secret of Santa Vittoria combines suspense and humor in a spirited ode to resistance. 35mm print courtesy of UCLA Film & Television Archive.

    Monday, May 30, 6:30pm

    Tuesday, May 31, 8:45pm

    La vita è bella

    Carlo Ludovico Bragaglia, Italy, 1943, 35mm, 76m


    Italian with English subtitles

    This enchanting bit of wartime-era escapism follows the fortunes of an impecunious count (Alberto Rabagliati) who has gambled away his funds and is contemplating suicide. He gets a new lease on life when a medical doctor strikes a strange bargain with him: stay alive for one more week in exchange for money—but the deal comes with a catch. Playing an aspiring singer, Magnani is provided ample opportunity to display the distinctive vocal style she honed early in her career as a nightclub performer, for which she was dubbed “the Italian Édith Piaf.” 35mm print from Istituto Luce Cinecittà.

    Sunday, May 22, 8:45pm

    Thursday, May 26, 4:30pm*

    *Venue: Elinor Bunin Munroe Film Center, 144 West 65th Street


    Volcano / Vulcano

    William Dieterle, Italy, 1950, 35mm, 106m

    Italian with English subtitles

    While Magnani’s ex-lover Roberto Rossellini was shooting Stromboli with his new Hollywood girlfriend Ingrid Bergman, the Italian actress was filming this rival neorealist drama—also about a woman stranded on a hostile volcanic island—just a few miles away. The result was tabloid gold, as well as a genuinely fascinating movie in which Magnani plays a prostitute banished from Naples and forced to return to the hardscrabble island of her childhood. There, she is shunned by the community’s moralistic denizens as she tries to save her younger sister (Geraldine Brooks) from being seduced by a shady deep-sea diver (Rossano Brazzi). Helmed by German emigré Hollywood director William Dieterle, Volcano is a delirious blend of neorealist tropes—a gritty working-class milieu, sunlit location shooting, docu-realist fishing scenes—and juicy melodrama involving sunken treasure, sex trafficking, murder, and that volcano just waiting to erupt. 35mm print from Istituto Luce Cinecittà.

    Tuesday, May 24, 6:30pm

    Friday, May 27, 4:00pm

    Wild Is the Wind

    George Cukor, USA, 1957, 16mm, 114m


    English and Italian with English subtitles

    A torrid tale of lust and betrayal plays out against the backdrop of the American Southwest in this full-throttle melodrama. Anthony Quinn, the rare actor who could match Magnani’s explosive presence, plays a Nevada sheep rancher who, haunted by the death of his wife, marries her Italian sister (Magnani) and brings her back to America to live with him. But his controlling nature and the inescapable shadow of his first marriage (echoes of Hitchcock’s Rebecca) drive her into the arms of a young ranch hand (Anthony Franciosa). For her second American film, Magnani jumped at the chance to work with George Cukor, under whose direction she earned a Best Actress Oscar nomination. Said Cukor: “No actress possesses the magic and the fire of Anna.” Print courtesy of the Academy Film Archive.

    Thursday, May 26, 6:30pm*

    *Venue: Elinor Bunin Munroe Film Center, 144 West 65th Street

    Woman Trouble / Molti sogni per le strade

    Mario Camerini, Italy, 1948, 35mm, 84m


    Italian with English subtitles

    The Italian title of this neorealist seriocomedy translates as “The Street Has Many Dreams,” a more fitting name for a poignant, slice-of-life road movie. Magnani stars as a domineering Roman wife and mother along for the ride as her husband (Massimo Girotti, the hunky leading man of Visconti’s Ossessione) tries, unbeknownst to her, to ditch a car he stole in a moment of desperation. Woman Trouble moves deftly between compassionate social realism and breezy comedy as it delves into the hopes and fears of postwar, working-class Italians. The silvery cinematography is courtesy of Nights of Cabiria DP Aldo Tonti and the music by the great Nino Rota. 35mm print from Istituto Luce Cinecittà.

    Thursday, May 19, 9:00pm

    Friday, May 20, 2:00pm





     

  • An Explosive Week for i-Italy!

    - The original article in Corriere della Sera 

    (in Italian) (in English).

    - The interview by Goffredo Palmenrini (in Italian).

    - The press release on CNBC.

    ______________________________________

    Italy Finally Speaks (in English) to the American Market

    Italy’s largest newspaper, Corriere della Sera, recently reviewed the experience of “i-Italy,” a fast-growing multimedia network based in New York dedicated to Italian affairs. The story appeared in the paper’s weekly insert “Innovation.”

    Funded in 2008 by a group of journalists, academics and social media experts, in a few years the i-Italy network—online, print and television—overtook all major Italian news sources in reporting about Italy abroad.

    In order to access government funds, mainstream Italian media must provide news in Italian, even if it targets foreign markets. The law originated in the 20th century to connect with the masses of emigrants leaving the country. According to estimates, there are as many Italians abroad as there are in Italy (60 million; roughly 23 million in the US alone).

    But this eventually isolated the country from the international arena, i-Italy’s editor-in-chief Letizia Airos tells the Corriere, especially in the U.S.  “Italian citizens living here now read their own newspapers online, in their mother tongue. But Italian Americans, who mainly speak only English, have lost touch with their ancestral culture. Not to speak of millions of Americans who are passionate about Italian food, fashion, and lifestyle.” This vast group has had nowhere to turn to… until now.

    To reach the Italophile market, i-Italy renounced government funds and opted for English instead. And they soon discovered it’s not just a matter of translation. “The greatest challenge is making ourselves understood,” says Airos. “To communicate Italy abroad, you need a cultural bridge… That’s what i-Italy is.”

    Italy is in great demand in the US—especially in the areas of food, fashion, tourism, art and culture—but Italian institutions and private businesses haven’t caught on. They spend enormous sums to place ads in mainstream American media. But that gets them nowhere nearer the enormous niche of American Italophiles. Enter i-Italy.

    i-Italy, according to the Corriere, has taken an unconventional route to traditional media platforms. Begun as an online resource, it later added print and television outlets. The figures are impressive: iItaly.org receives 1.1 million visits per year, its YouTube channel has 1.7 million views, and its Facebook page has almost 200,000 ‘likes’. Furthermore, 50,000 copies of a bi-monthly magazine called i-ItalyNY are distributed for free in New York City. And every Sunday i-Italy airs a TV program on NYC Life, the official PBS of the City.

    (Download the original article by Andrea Marinelli on Corriere della Sera pdf).

  • Life & People

    Honoring Italian American Women @ the 2016 NOIAW Gala

    The National Organization of Italian American Women (NOIAW), the only national organization for women of Italian ancestry, celebrated its 35th Anniversary with a Luncheon and Silent Auction at the St. Regis New York on Saturday, April 16, 2016. The event honored two accomplished Italian American women: Alisyn Camerota and Jeanne Mariani Sullivan.

    Ms. Camerota is CNN anchor and co-host on CNN’s morning show New Day with Chris Cuomoand Michaela Pereira. NOIAW Chair Maria Tamburri introduced Ms. Camerota. In accepting her award, Ms. Camerota emphasized the importance of her family’s support throughout her life, saying, “Not only were the Italian women in my family wonderful role models on various levels, they were also great cheerleaders. They told me I could do whatever I aspired to do when I grew up. No one ever said, oh, maybe you shouldn’t pick broadcast journalism, maybe you shouldn’t set your sights on becoming a national newscaster, that’s just too competitive. No, they completely supported me, and believed in me and cheered me on, for which I’m eternally grateful today.”

    Ms. Sullivan is a founding principal of StarVest Partners, a New York City-based venture capital firm that invests in outstanding expansion stage technology-enabled B2B companies. 

    As Chief Inspiration Officer at Sullivan Adventures, Ms. Sullivan advises venture backed and multi-national companies seeking to promote opportunity, access to capital, board seats and entrepreneurship for women. NOIAW Treasurer and Luncheon Co-Chair, Maria T. Vullo, introduced Ms. Sullivan.

    In her speech, Ms. Sullivan spoke eloquently about the lessons she learned from growing up in a large Italian American family, and touched on the importance of overcoming gender bias in order to get access to capital for female entrepreneurs, saying, “What made me a fierce advocate for women is this: I learned that we are 50% of the world, and we make more than 85% of the household decisions…We have clout with our $11.5 trillion of investible assets. This is the power of the purse.” In conclusion, Ms. Sullivan noted, “I am the one honoring you today – those of you who are with me to make the world a better place for young women and grown women, as role models, opening doors and funding women-led businesses, helping to fix a big problem of access to capital.”

    NOIAW’s Founder and Chair Emerita, Dr. Aileen Riotto Sirey, recounted how NOIAW began in 1980, sparked by a conversation she had with the late Hon. Geraldine A. Ferraro. In her remarks, Dr. Sirey recognized all of the historic members of NOIAW’s board present at the event, including Barbara Gerard, Joann Sicoli, CMP, Diana Femia, Judge Saliann Scarpulla, Lucrezia Gallelli, Linda Carlozzi, Justice Angela Mazzarelli, founding member Donna de Matteo, and founding member and distinguished board member, Matilda Raffa Cuomo.

    Anne Marie D’Attelo, Luncheon Co-Chair, presented NOIAW’s 2016 scholarship awards to Sarah Capasso (the Honorable Geraldine A. Ferraro Scholarship Award donated by John A.
    Zaccaro), Vanessa Corcoran (35th Anniversary Award), Victoria Calabrese (award in honor of Barbara Garodnick, sister of Dr. Aileen Riotto Sirey, NOIAW Founder & Chair Emerita).

    Unable to be present were scholarship award winners Maria Marotti (35th Anniversary Award), and Stefania Patinella (award in honor of David A. and Rita D. Martone, donated by Patricia Martone.)

    175 guests enjoyed a beautiful silent auction with a wide array of items, featuring gift certificates to some of New York City’s best restaurants and cultural institutions, travel and heritage discovery packages in Italy, handbags by Jennifer Tattanelli, Era Balestrieri, and Cole Haan, books by Lidia Bastianich and Adriana Trigiani, deluxe gourmet baskets with the highest-quality Italian artisanal products, and a raffle of fine jewelry and handbags.

    “Since our founding in 1980, NOIAW has supported and inspired Italian American women,” said Maria Tamburri, NOIAW Chair. “As we celebrate our 35th anniversary, we are extremely proud to have honored Alisyn Camerota and Jeanne Mariani Sullivan, two women of the highest caliber and distinction. Alisyn and Jeanne join a long list of distinguished NOIAW honorees, including our founding member, the late Hon. Geraldine A. Ferraro; Lidia Mattichio Bastianich; Lisa Lemole Oz; and many more.” 

    --

    ABOUT NOIAW

    The National Organization of Italian American Women is the only national organization for women of Italian ancestry. Its mission is to unite and connect women through Italian culture and heritage; to celebrate the achievements of women of Italian ancestry; to inspire and enrich members with shared interests in cultural programs; and to empower and advance the educational and professional aspirations of current and future generations.

    For more information about NOIAW, its members and programs, or to become a member, visit www.noiaw.org, call (212) 642-2003).  The National Organization of Italian American Women, Inc. is a 501(c) (3) not-for-profit organization. Contributions are tax deductible to the full extent permitted by law.

  • Events: Reports

    Panorama Europe Film 2016 Festival

    Friday, May 6 opening night presentation is Anna, with award-winning Italian actress Valeria Golino in person, followed by reception. From mind-bending genre experiments that reinvent the musical, sci-fi film, and horror movie, to gripping dramatic features and documentaries capturing the tenuous nature of modern life for a variety of wanderers and refugees, Panorama Europe 2016 is a vibrant selection of some of the finest and most riveting films coming out of Europe today.

    Filled with New York premieres, with filmmakers from Greece, Malta, Poland, Portugal, and the Czech Republic in person, this is a great opportunity to discover some of the most exciting new international filmmakers. 

    The Opening Night Film is Anna (Italy, 2015), with award-winning actress Valeria Golino, best known for her roles in Barry Levinson’s Rain Man and Emanuele Crialese’s Respiro, in person on Friday, May 6.  The screening will be followed by a conversation with Golino and a reception.

    Following Italy’s Anna, festival films hail from countries as diverse as Austria, Belgium, Croatia, Czech Republic, Estonia, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Kosovo, Lithuania, Malta, The Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, and Spain.

    Programmed by David Schwartz, the Museum’s Chief Curator, and Eric Hynes, Associate Curator of Film, the festival offers New York audiences what may be their only chance to see these acclaimed films on the big screen.

    Some of the highlights of this year’s edition include Spartacus & Cassandra (True/False 2015, HotDOCS 2016), a poignant documentary on the plight of Romani children living on the margins of society; The Lure (Special Jury Prize winner for Unique Vision and Design at the 2016 Sundance Film Festival), a fearless and imaginative vampire disco musical with 1980’s communist kitsch; the 2016 Austrian Film Award winner for Best Documentary Lampedusa in Winter, an eye-opening look at the struggles suffered by both a tiny community at the edge of Europe and the migrants risking their lives to reach the island’s shores; the visually ravishing coming of age romance The Summer of Sangaile which won the World Cinema Directing award at the 2016 Sundance Film Festival; and History’s Future, visual artist Fiona Tan’s mind-bending, genre-hopping tour through contemporary Europe, co-written with UK film critic Jonathan Romney.

    “Panorama Europe is a great showcase for some of the strongest feature films that are making the rounds of international film festivals,” said Chief Curator David Schwartz. “The Museum is very pleased to present this showcase, which is filled with New York premieres of films by major emerging directors.”

    Coordinated by Gaelle Duchemin, European Union Delegation to the United Nations and in partnership with the Czech Center New York/Bohemian National Hall, the Panorama Europe festival is comprised of the Albanian Institute New York, the Arts Council Malta New York, the Austrian Cultural Forum New York, the Balassi Institute - Hungarian Cultural Center New York, the Consulate General of the Republic of Croatia and the Croatian Audiovisual Centre, the Ministry of Culture of the Republic of Estonia, the Consulate General of Portugal, the Consulate General of Slovakia, the Cultural Services of the French Embassy, the Delegation of the European Union to the United Nations, Dutch Culture USA program by the Consulate General of the Netherlands in New York, the Embassy of the Republic of Lithuania, the Embassy of the Republic of Slovenia and the Slovenian Film Centre, the General Representation of the Government of Flanders to the U.S.A., the Goethe-Institut New York, Instituto Cervantes, the Italian Cultural Institute, the Consulate General of Greece in New York and the Onassis Foundation (U.S.A.), and the Polish Cultural Institute New York.

    FULL LINE UP
    SCHEDULE AND DESCRIPTIONS FOR PANORAMA EUROPE, MAY 6–22, 2016*
    *Program may be subject to change.

    OPENING NIGHT FILM & RECEPTION
    Anna (Per amor vostro)
    New York Premiere with actress Valeria Golino in person
    Followed by reception
    Presented by the Italian Cultural Institute
    FRIDAY, MAY 6, 7:00 P.M. AT MUSEUM OF THE MOVING IMAGE

    Italy. Dir. Giuseppe M. Gaudino. 2015, 117 mins. In Italian with English subtitles. With Valeria Golino, Massimiliano Gallo, Adriano Giannini. A woman’s downward spiral is viscerally evoked in this fantastical and psychologically charged character study. Winner of the Best Actress award at the Venice Film Festival, Valeria Golino is astonishing as a wife and mother losing her grip as she contends with a brutish criminal husband and three rebellious children. An affair with a dashing television actor seems to offer an escape—but is it also a dead end? Shot in evocative black-and-white—with surreal bursts of color to convey the protagonist’s memories and fantasies—Anna is an emotionally shattering portrait of a woman coming undone.

  • Fatti e Storie

    71° anniversario della Liberazione. Il Presidente Mattarella si reca a Varallo


    Il Presidente della Repubblica Sergio Mattarella in occasione del 71° anniversario della Liberazione si è recato a Varallo, città insignita della Medaglia d'Oro al Valor Militare. Al suo arrivo ha deposto una corona d'alloro al "Muro dei Fucilati" al Cimitero di Varallo.


    Nel teatro comunale ha avuto luogo la cerimonia di celebrazione che è stata aperta dall'esecuzione dell'Inno nazionale da parte degli alunni delle scuole elementari e medie dell'Istituto Comprensivo di Varallo.



    Sono quindi intervenuti il sindaco di Varallo Eraldo Botta, il Presidente dell'Unione Montana, Carlo Cerli, il Presidente dell'ANPI, sez. Varallo Val Sesia, Bruno Rastelli, il Direttore dell'Istituto per la Storia della Resistenza e della Società Contemporanea nel Biellese, nel Vercellese, e in Valsesia, Enrico Pagano. 


    La cerimonia si è conclusa con l'intervento del Presidente Mattarella.


    Successivamente il Presidente della Repubblica si è recato al Cimitero di Rassa e ha deposto una corona d'alloro sulla Lapide dei Caduti. Mattarella ha incontrato quindi la cittadinanza di Rassa.





    Questo l'integrale dell'intervento del del Presidente Sergio Mattarella alla cerimonia per il 71° anniversario della Liberazione

    Varallo, 25/04/2016


    Rivolgo un saluto a tutti i presenti, alle genti della Valsesia, al Sindaco di Varallo e a tutti i Sindaci, al Presidente dell'Unione Montana, al Presidente della Regione Piemonte, alle autorità presenti, ai parlamentari, agli oratori di questa mattina che ringrazio per le loro considerazioni, a partire dal presidente dell'Anpi, figlio del Sindaco della Liberazione di questa città.


    Un saluto particolare ai bambini e ai ragazzi che sono qui con noi oggi: è soprattutto loro questo giorno di festa che sono lieto di celebrare per tutta Italia, qui in questa città e in questa splendida valle.


    La festa della Libertà, la festa della Liberazione.

    Del giorno che vide Sandro Pertini annunciare, da Radio Milano Libera, la fine della guerra, il recupero dell'unità nazionale, l'avvio di un nuovo cammino democratico.


    Libertà che è nata qui, su queste montagne, con la prima "zona libera", anello di quelle Repubbliche partigiane che hanno segnato la volontà di riscatto del popolo italiano; vere e proprie radici della scelta che il voto del 2 giugno 1946 avrebbe sancito.


    Ricordiamo, in questo 2016, i settanta anni dal referendum istituzionale in cui gli italiani e le italiane - queste ultime per la prima volta al voto - vennero chiamati a decidere tra monarchia e repubblica.


    E' un filo che segna il legame tra la Resistenza, il nuovo carattere dell'Italia democratica e l'ordinamento repubblicano.


    E' sul 25 aprile, su questa data, che si fonda, anzitutto, la nostra Repubblica.


    E' nel percorso, arduo ed esigente, che va dall'8 settembre 1943 alla Liberazione che troviamo le ragioni della ripresa d'Italia.


    Un'Italia divisa fra il Regno del Sud e il governo Badoglio, la amministrazione alleata nel Mezzogiorno, il Terzo Reich che occupava, a partire da Napoli, il resto d'Italia, annettendosi addirittura l'Alto Adige, il Friuli e la Venezia Giulia, l'Istria e la Dalmazia, sino alla sciagurata avventura di Salò.


    Un'Italia che aveva perso l'unità, così faticosamente conquistata con le guerre d'Indipendenza.

    Un'Italia che aveva visto sfumare la propria indipendenza.

    Un'Italia devastata dalla guerra nelle sue macerie materiali e sfregiata da vent'anni di dittatura fascista nelle sue macerie morali, con la perdita, anzitutto, della libertà.


    Contro tutto questo si levarono le coscienze limpide del nostro Paese: patrioti antifascisti che non avevano mai smesso di credere in un futuro migliore; militari abbandonati a se stessi dopo l'armistizio, che difesero il senso dell'onore e la Patria onorarono con sacrificio, talvolta con vero e proprio eroismo; donne e uomini, nelle città e nelle campagne, che non avevano mai smesso di credere che ogni persona va rispettata e che la sua dignità non può mai essere violata né per ragioni di razza, né per ragioni di religione, né per ragioni di pensiero, né per ragioni di genere, né per ragioni di condizione sociale.


    Lì - dalle loro convinzioni e dai loro comportamenti - è nata la Repubblica.

    Dalla necessità di trasfondere l'anima autentica del Paese nell'ordinamento dello Stato.

    Di riannodare l'idea di Italia, così oltraggiata, ai sentimenti del suo popolo.

    Di conferire significato alla condizione di cittadinanza, come forma di integrazione civica e democratica, nel passaggio da "sudditi" a "cittadini".


    Il 2 giugno 1946 divenne così la conclusione di un percorso e, allo stesso tempo, un punto di partenza.


    Punto di partenza, per lo sviluppo di quel confronto che avrebbe poi condotto, un anno e mezzo dopo, alla Costituzione, con i suoi valori personalisti e solidaristici.


    Conclusione di un percorso, legato alla idea mazziniana, nel Risorgimento (e condivisa da Gioberti), di un patto nazionale dettato da una Costituente, essenziale per la nuova Italia unita.


    Un percorso di transizione costituzionale, infine, svoltosi dopo il 25 luglio 1943 e che fu formalizzato nell'accordo tra il Comitato di Liberazione Nazionale e la Corona, nel gennaio 1944, dopo il Congresso di Bari delle forze antifasciste e la dichiarazione di Vincenzo Arangio-Ruiz: "il patto fra re e popolo ha perduto il suo vigore e vale, invece, il principio che ogni potere venuto dal popolo al popolo ritorni".


    La popolazione, stremata dal fascismo e dalle sue guerre, guardava già da tempo oltre il conflitto, a conferma dell'avvenuto divorzio tra regime e nazione.


    Il diffuso desiderio di pace e di libertà portava all'aspirazione condivisa di dar vita ad una nuova Italia che, lasciando alle spalle le atrocità vissute, guardasse a un futuro ricco di speranza e di progresso.


    E' stata la promessa realizzata dalla Repubblica in questi settanta anni !


    La scelta repubblicana del popolo italiano reagiva alle sofferenze di una guerra prolungata: la sfiducia nei confronti della dinastia regnante doveva travolgere, con questa, l'istituto monarchico, che pure era stato strumento della unificazione italiana.


    Restituire sostanza allo Stato, dissoltosi nell'estate del 1943, significò sceglierne una nuova forma, lontana dal concepirlo come padrone e oppressore dei suoi cittadini, ed espressione, invece, dei diritti dei singoli e delle comunità.


    Questo il messaggio del costituzionalismo della Resistenza: realizzare un ordine politico e sociale incarnazione di valori ben diversi da quelli dell'autoritarismo fascista ma che non erano neppure quelli ottocenteschi della nazione e dello Stato liberale.


    Un ordine che, sull'esempio delle Repubbliche partigiane, avrebbe guardato alle autonomie locali e sociali del Paese come a un patrimonio prezioso da preservare e sviluppare.


    Dispersa l'identità, annullati i vincoli di solidarietà nazionale con l'avventura del regime fantoccio di Salò, il loro recupero si manifestò con un assetto che faceva tesoro della grande lezione della lotta delle democrazie contro il nazifascismo: a unire, o a contrapporre, non sarebbe stata più la logica di patrie arroccate su se stesse, bensì la comunanza di ideali di una comunità nazionale, impegnata a sostenere una nuova visione della comunità internazionale. Una visione incentrata sull'ideale dell'Europa e su quello delle Nazioni Unite.


    Travolte, tra il 1943 ed il 1945, le istituzioni legali, le popolazioni dettero vita autonomamente, con le "zone libere", dalla Valsesia all'Ossola, alle Langhe, all'Oltrepo' pavese, alla Carnia, alla Repubblica del Vara in Liguria, a quella di Montefiorino, ad altre e diverse istituzioni, modellate su principi inediti e orientate all'affermazione di valori democratici.


    La Resistenza interpretava, in questo modo, il sentimento del Paese.


    Un sentimento che, prima ancora che politico, veniva dalla consapevolezza della comune appartenenza al genere umano; dalla ribellione all'orrore delle stragi, delle leggi razziali e della persecuzione degli ebrei, dell'ideologia del sopruso e dell'esaltazione della morte.


    La Resistenza era, così, nel cuore degli italiani, prima ancora che nel loro impegno.


    La partecipazione dei cittadini tornava al centro di ogni iniziativa, con la carica rivoluzionaria che questo comportava: un bene che sarebbe divenuto cardine costituzionale.


    La democrazia è proprio questo: essere protagonisti, insieme agli altri, del nostro domani.


    Ecco perché siamo qui oggi, in Valsesia, a celebrare il 25 aprile e, con esso, gli imminenti settanta anni di Repubblica.


    Scriveva Piero Calamandrei:

    "se volete andare nei luoghi dove è nata la nostra Repubblica, venite dove caddero i nostri giovani. Ovunque è morto un italiano per riscattare la dignità e la libertà, andate lì perché lì è nata la nostra Repubblica".

    A Cefalonia, come a Sant'Anna di Stazzema, Boves, Porta San Paolo a Roma, Marzabotto, le Fosse Ardeatine, la risiera di San Sabba, nelle camere a gas, nei campi dove vennero rinchiusi gli internati italiani, ne troviamo la conferma.


    Ci parlano i fucilati di piazza Martiri a Borgosesia, quelli al cimitero di Varallo, a Rassa, i morti del Ponte della Pietà a Quarona (e oggi, qui, abbiamo, in Fra Malagola, un eccezionale testimone di quell'eccidio).

    Riposano qui i Carabinieri uccisi ad Alagna, i prigionieri di guerra australiani, britannici e neozelandesi che si unirono alla Resistenza e qui trovarono la morte ad opera dei reparti tedeschi e delle Brigate Nere.


    Su questi monti, in queste valli, con il sacrificio del sangue è stata scritta la parola libertà.


    Quasi tremila partigiani combattenti, cinquecento caduti, hanno rappresentato il tributo pagato in Valsesia, a nome dell'intera collettività nazionale, per la nuova Italia.


    Comandanti di prestigio come Cino Moscatelli ed Eraldo Gastone, entrambi, poi, parlamentari della Repubblica, seppero condurre, con sagacia, una campagna di guerriglia, a stretto contatto con la popolazione, sino a scacciare temporaneamente l'occupante.


    "Congiunte virtù militari e civili - recita la motivazione della Medaglia d'oro - opponevano all'aggressore la forza invincibile dell'amore per la libertà e per l'indipendenza della Patria".


    Fu il momento della diffusione dei Comitati di Liberazione Nazionale nei Comuni, nelle fabbriche, destinati a diventare un'efficace amministrazione-ombra clandestina, banco di prova delle capacità di governo, delle capacità di ricostruzione del popolo italiano.


    E, da quelle esperienze, la Valsesia democratica generò una assemblea di popolo: quel Consiglio di Valle che, sorto nel 1946 sotto l'impulso determinante di Giulio Pastore, doveva giocare un ruolo fondamentale nella ricostruzione materiale e civile di queste montagne e imporsi come modello nazionale: riprova dell'importanza del contributo che dalle periferie alimenta la vita democratica di tutta Italia.


    Cari giovani,

    quella storia, quelle storie ci interpellano ancora oggi.

    Ci dicono che è possibile dire no alla sopraffazione, alla violenza della guerra e del conflitto.

    Ci dicono che è possibile dire no all'apatia, al cinismo, alla paura.

    Ci dicono che esistono grandi ideali e sogni da realizzare per cui vale la pena battersi e che vi sono buone cause da far trionfare.


    Anzitutto la causa della verità, invocata, non a caso, dal Presidente Oscar Luigi Scalfaro, in opposizione a tesi revisioniste di comodo, nel corso della sua visita, nel 1994, a Borgosesia, in occasione del 50° anniversario della "zona libera".


    Qualcuno osserva che, senza il contributo delle forze alleate, la Liberazione sarebbe stata assai più aspra e dagli esiti incerti.


    L'unione delle democrazie fu decisiva ma, per la nostra libertà fu decisivo anche il contributo del nostro popolo.


    Del resto, ammoniva, sin dal Risorgimento, Giuseppe Mazzini, rivolgendosi ai tanti che speravano nell'intervento francese:" Più che la servitù temo la libertà recata in dono".


    Ecco perché è sempre tempo di Resistenza.


    E' tempo di Resistenza perché guerre e violenze crudeli si manifestano ai confini d'Europa, in Mediterraneo, in Medio Oriente.


    E, ovunque sia tempo di martirio, di tirannia, di tragedie umanitarie che accompagnano i conflitti, lì vanno affermati i valori della Resistenza.


    Non esiste una condizione di "non guerra".


    O si promuove la pace e la collaborazione o si prepara lo scontro futuro.


    Per questo è stata lungimirante la scelta di quegli statisti che, dopo la tragedia della seconda guerra mondiale, ricostruirono l'Europa nell'integrazione politica ed economica.


    I patimenti sofferti hanno fatto sì che l'Italia (e con lei altri Paesi europei), scegliesse la strada del ripudio della guerra.


    A chi come i partigiani qui presenti - ai quali rivolgo il ringraziamento della comunità tutta intera - seppe interpretare il desiderio di pace del popolo italiano, va riconosciuto un merito storico.


    Settant'anni di pace ci sono stati consegnati dai nostri padri.


    A noi spetta il compito di continuare, di allargare il sentiero della concordia dentro l'Unione Europea e ovunque l'Europa può far sentire la sua voce e sviluppare la sua iniziativa.


    Le missioni di pace della comunità internazionale, alle quali responsabilmente partecipiamo, stanno a testimoniare la nostra sensibilità e la nostra coerenza.


    Non ci può essere pace soltanto per alcuni e miseria, fame, guerre, per altri: queste travolgerebbero anche la pace di chi pensa di averla conseguita per sempre.


    Di questo dobbiamo essere consapevoli e dobbiamo operare di conseguenza.


    Come non sostenere la battaglia della Liberazione dei popoli, anzitutto dal terrorismo, che affigge e destabilizza interi Paesi dell'Africa e del Medio Oriente e si riverbera in Europa ?


    Come reagire alle ingiustizie e alle violenze se non, ancora una volta, attraverso la tenace costruzione di un ordinamento internazionale che applichi il principio fondamentale della Dichiarazione universale dei Diritti dell'uomo: "tutti gli uomini sono uguali"?


    Il patto di cittadinanza determinato dalla scelta repubblicana ci ha permesso di crescere in coesione sociale, affrontando sfide, anche drammatiche, in questi sette decenni, eppure oggi è necessario essere consci che è la dimensione internazionale, a partire dall'Unione Europea, quella in cui vengono messi alla prova i motivi ispiratori della nostra convivenza.


    La Resistenza e la Repubblica, insieme con i movimenti di lotta antifascista degli altri Paesi europei, sono diventati storia e identità del nostro popolo. Hanno generato un ordinamento costituzionale che ci ha permesso di sviluppare diritti, opportunità, responsabilità diffuse.


    Oggi questa sfida riguarda l'Europa: per svolgere i suoi compiti è necessario che si consolidi un ordinamento europeo in grado di farne davvero un soggetto attivo di cooperazione e giustizia nel mondo globalizzato.


    Nella storia comune che abbiamo saputo costruire in questo dopoguerra, è legittimo e giusto guardare ai contrasti che ci hanno accompagnato con la saggezza della corresponsabilità di cui ci siamo caricati.


    Il 25 aprile 1945 e i giorni immediatamente successivi segnarono il ritorno alla democrazia in Italia, la sconfitta del nazifascismo in tutta Europa, la possibilità che il nostro Paese e tutta l'Europa sviluppassero in pace.


    C'è motivo di festa, dunque, oggi, per la rifondata identità italiana ed europea, per fare memoria della insurrezione generale proclamata dal Comitato nazionale di Liberazione Alta Italia, che portò a scacciare il nemico dalle principali città del Nord.


    Una festa che appartiene a tutti gli italiani amanti della libertà.


    Viva la Valsesia, con la sua Medaglia d'oro al valor Militare!


    Viva la Repubblica!


    Viva l'Italia!







     

  • 71° anniversario della Liberazione. Il Presidente Mattarella si reca a Varallo


    Il Presidente della Repubblica Sergio Mattarella in occasione del 71° anniversario della Liberazione si è recato a Varallo, città insignita della Medaglia d'Oro al Valor Militare. Al suo arrivo ha deposto una corona d'alloro al "Muro dei Fucilati" al Cimitero di Varallo.


    Nel teatro comunale ha avuto luogo la cerimonia di celebrazione che è stata aperta dall'esecuzione dell'Inno nazionale da parte degli alunni delle scuole elementari e medie dell'Istituto Comprensivo di Varallo.



    Sono quindi intervenuti il sindaco di Varallo Eraldo Botta, il Presidente dell'Unione Montana, Carlo Cerli, il Presidente dell'ANPI, sez. Varallo Val Sesia, Bruno Rastelli, il Direttore dell'Istituto per la Storia della Resistenza e della Società Contemporanea nel Biellese, nel Vercellese, e in Valsesia, Enrico Pagano. 


    La cerimonia si è conclusa con l'intervento del Presidente Mattarella.


    Successivamente il Presidente della Repubblica si è recato al Cimitero di Rassa e ha deposto una corona d'alloro sulla Lapide dei Caduti. Mattarella ha incontrato quindi la cittadinanza di Rassa.





    Questo l'integrale dell'intervento del del Presidente Sergio Mattarella alla cerimonia per il 71° anniversario della Liberazione

    Varallo, 25/04/2016


    Rivolgo un saluto a tutti i presenti, alle genti della Valsesia, al Sindaco di Varallo e a tutti i Sindaci, al Presidente dell'Unione Montana, al Presidente della Regione Piemonte, alle autorità presenti, ai parlamentari, agli oratori di questa mattina che ringrazio per le loro considerazioni, a partire dal presidente dell'Anpi, figlio del Sindaco della Liberazione di questa città.


    Un saluto particolare ai bambini e ai ragazzi che sono qui con noi oggi: è soprattutto loro questo giorno di festa che sono lieto di celebrare per tutta Italia, qui in questa città e in questa splendida valle.


    La festa della Libertà, la festa della Liberazione.

    Del giorno che vide Sandro Pertini annunciare, da Radio Milano Libera, la fine della guerra, il recupero dell'unità nazionale, l'avvio di un nuovo cammino democratico.


    Libertà che è nata qui, su queste montagne, con la prima "zona libera", anello di quelle Repubbliche partigiane che hanno segnato la volontà di riscatto del popolo italiano; vere e proprie radici della scelta che il voto del 2 giugno 1946 avrebbe sancito.


    Ricordiamo, in questo 2016, i settanta anni dal referendum istituzionale in cui gli italiani e le italiane - queste ultime per la prima volta al voto - vennero chiamati a decidere tra monarchia e repubblica.


    E' un filo che segna il legame tra la Resistenza, il nuovo carattere dell'Italia democratica e l'ordinamento repubblicano.


    E' sul 25 aprile, su questa data, che si fonda, anzitutto, la nostra Repubblica.


    E' nel percorso, arduo ed esigente, che va dall'8 settembre 1943 alla Liberazione che troviamo le ragioni della ripresa d'Italia.


    Un'Italia divisa fra il Regno del Sud e il governo Badoglio, la amministrazione alleata nel Mezzogiorno, il Terzo Reich che occupava, a partire da Napoli, il resto d'Italia, annettendosi addirittura l'Alto Adige, il Friuli e la Venezia Giulia, l'Istria e la Dalmazia, sino alla sciagurata avventura di Salò.


    Un'Italia che aveva perso l'unità, così faticosamente conquistata con le guerre d'Indipendenza.

    Un'Italia che aveva visto sfumare la propria indipendenza.

    Un'Italia devastata dalla guerra nelle sue macerie materiali e sfregiata da vent'anni di dittatura fascista nelle sue macerie morali, con la perdita, anzitutto, della libertà.


    Contro tutto questo si levarono le coscienze limpide del nostro Paese: patrioti antifascisti che non avevano mai smesso di credere in un futuro migliore; militari abbandonati a se stessi dopo l'armistizio, che difesero il senso dell'onore e la Patria onorarono con sacrificio, talvolta con vero e proprio eroismo; donne e uomini, nelle città e nelle campagne, che non avevano mai smesso di credere che ogni persona va rispettata e che la sua dignità non può mai essere violata né per ragioni di razza, né per ragioni di religione, né per ragioni di pensiero, né per ragioni di genere, né per ragioni di condizione sociale.


    Lì - dalle loro convinzioni e dai loro comportamenti - è nata la Repubblica.

    Dalla necessità di trasfondere l'anima autentica del Paese nell'ordinamento dello Stato.

    Di riannodare l'idea di Italia, così oltraggiata, ai sentimenti del suo popolo.

    Di conferire significato alla condizione di cittadinanza, come forma di integrazione civica e democratica, nel passaggio da "sudditi" a "cittadini".


    Il 2 giugno 1946 divenne così la conclusione di un percorso e, allo stesso tempo, un punto di partenza.


    Punto di partenza, per lo sviluppo di quel confronto che avrebbe poi condotto, un anno e mezzo dopo, alla Costituzione, con i suoi valori personalisti e solidaristici.


    Conclusione di un percorso, legato alla idea mazziniana, nel Risorgimento (e condivisa da Gioberti), di un patto nazionale dettato da una Costituente, essenziale per la nuova Italia unita.


    Un percorso di transizione costituzionale, infine, svoltosi dopo il 25 luglio 1943 e che fu formalizzato nell'accordo tra il Comitato di Liberazione Nazionale e la Corona, nel gennaio 1944, dopo il Congresso di Bari delle forze antifasciste e la dichiarazione di Vincenzo Arangio-Ruiz: "il patto fra re e popolo ha perduto il suo vigore e vale, invece, il principio che ogni potere venuto dal popolo al popolo ritorni".


    La popolazione, stremata dal fascismo e dalle sue guerre, guardava già da tempo oltre il conflitto, a conferma dell'avvenuto divorzio tra regime e nazione.


    Il diffuso desiderio di pace e di libertà portava all'aspirazione condivisa di dar vita ad una nuova Italia che, lasciando alle spalle le atrocità vissute, guardasse a un futuro ricco di speranza e di progresso.


    E' stata la promessa realizzata dalla Repubblica in questi settanta anni !


    La scelta repubblicana del popolo italiano reagiva alle sofferenze di una guerra prolungata: la sfiducia nei confronti della dinastia regnante doveva travolgere, con questa, l'istituto monarchico, che pure era stato strumento della unificazione italiana.


    Restituire sostanza allo Stato, dissoltosi nell'estate del 1943, significò sceglierne una nuova forma, lontana dal concepirlo come padrone e oppressore dei suoi cittadini, ed espressione, invece, dei diritti dei singoli e delle comunità.


    Questo il messaggio del costituzionalismo della Resistenza: realizzare un ordine politico e sociale incarnazione di valori ben diversi da quelli dell'autoritarismo fascista ma che non erano neppure quelli ottocenteschi della nazione e dello Stato liberale.


    Un ordine che, sull'esempio delle Repubbliche partigiane, avrebbe guardato alle autonomie locali e sociali del Paese come a un patrimonio prezioso da preservare e sviluppare.


    Dispersa l'identità, annullati i vincoli di solidarietà nazionale con l'avventura del regime fantoccio di Salò, il loro recupero si manifestò con un assetto che faceva tesoro della grande lezione della lotta delle democrazie contro il nazifascismo: a unire, o a contrapporre, non sarebbe stata più la logica di patrie arroccate su se stesse, bensì la comunanza di ideali di una comunità nazionale, impegnata a sostenere una nuova visione della comunità internazionale. Una visione incentrata sull'ideale dell'Europa e su quello delle Nazioni Unite.


    Travolte, tra il 1943 ed il 1945, le istituzioni legali, le popolazioni dettero vita autonomamente, con le "zone libere", dalla Valsesia all'Ossola, alle Langhe, all'Oltrepo' pavese, alla Carnia, alla Repubblica del Vara in Liguria, a quella di Montefiorino, ad altre e diverse istituzioni, modellate su principi inediti e orientate all'affermazione di valori democratici.


    La Resistenza interpretava, in questo modo, il sentimento del Paese.


    Un sentimento che, prima ancora che politico, veniva dalla consapevolezza della comune appartenenza al genere umano; dalla ribellione all'orrore delle stragi, delle leggi razziali e della persecuzione degli ebrei, dell'ideologia del sopruso e dell'esaltazione della morte.


    La Resistenza era, così, nel cuore degli italiani, prima ancora che nel loro impegno.


    La partecipazione dei cittadini tornava al centro di ogni iniziativa, con la carica rivoluzionaria che questo comportava: un bene che sarebbe divenuto cardine costituzionale.


    La democrazia è proprio questo: essere protagonisti, insieme agli altri, del nostro domani.


    Ecco perché siamo qui oggi, in Valsesia, a celebrare il 25 aprile e, con esso, gli imminenti settanta anni di Repubblica.


    Scriveva Piero Calamandrei:

    "se volete andare nei luoghi dove è nata la nostra Repubblica, venite dove caddero i nostri giovani. Ovunque è morto un italiano per riscattare la dignità e la libertà, andate lì perché lì è nata la nostra Repubblica".

    A Cefalonia, come a Sant'Anna di Stazzema, Boves, Porta San Paolo a Roma, Marzabotto, le Fosse Ardeatine, la risiera di San Sabba, nelle camere a gas, nei campi dove vennero rinchiusi gli internati italiani, ne troviamo la conferma.


    Ci parlano i fucilati di piazza Martiri a Borgosesia, quelli al cimitero di Varallo, a Rassa, i morti del Ponte della Pietà a Quarona (e oggi, qui, abbiamo, in Fra Malagola, un eccezionale testimone di quell'eccidio).

    Riposano qui i Carabinieri uccisi ad Alagna, i prigionieri di guerra australiani, britannici e neozelandesi che si unirono alla Resistenza e qui trovarono la morte ad opera dei reparti tedeschi e delle Brigate Nere.


    Su questi monti, in queste valli, con il sacrificio del sangue è stata scritta la parola libertà.


    Quasi tremila partigiani combattenti, cinquecento caduti, hanno rappresentato il tributo pagato in Valsesia, a nome dell'intera collettività nazionale, per la nuova Italia.


    Comandanti di prestigio come Cino Moscatelli ed Eraldo Gastone, entrambi, poi, parlamentari della Repubblica, seppero condurre, con sagacia, una campagna di guerriglia, a stretto contatto con la popolazione, sino a scacciare temporaneamente l'occupante.


    "Congiunte virtù militari e civili - recita la motivazione della Medaglia d'oro - opponevano all'aggressore la forza invincibile dell'amore per la libertà e per l'indipendenza della Patria".


    Fu il momento della diffusione dei Comitati di Liberazione Nazionale nei Comuni, nelle fabbriche, destinati a diventare un'efficace amministrazione-ombra clandestina, banco di prova delle capacità di governo, delle capacità di ricostruzione del popolo italiano.


    E, da quelle esperienze, la Valsesia democratica generò una assemblea di popolo: quel Consiglio di Valle che, sorto nel 1946 sotto l'impulso determinante di Giulio Pastore, doveva giocare un ruolo fondamentale nella ricostruzione materiale e civile di queste montagne e imporsi come modello nazionale: riprova dell'importanza del contributo che dalle periferie alimenta la vita democratica di tutta Italia.


    Cari giovani,

    quella storia, quelle storie ci interpellano ancora oggi.

    Ci dicono che è possibile dire no alla sopraffazione, alla violenza della guerra e del conflitto.

    Ci dicono che è possibile dire no all'apatia, al cinismo, alla paura.

    Ci dicono che esistono grandi ideali e sogni da realizzare per cui vale la pena battersi e che vi sono buone cause da far trionfare.


    Anzitutto la causa della verità, invocata, non a caso, dal Presidente Oscar Luigi Scalfaro, in opposizione a tesi revisioniste di comodo, nel corso della sua visita, nel 1994, a Borgosesia, in occasione del 50° anniversario della "zona libera".


    Qualcuno osserva che, senza il contributo delle forze alleate, la Liberazione sarebbe stata assai più aspra e dagli esiti incerti.


    L'unione delle democrazie fu decisiva ma, per la nostra libertà fu decisivo anche il contributo del nostro popolo.


    Del resto, ammoniva, sin dal Risorgimento, Giuseppe Mazzini, rivolgendosi ai tanti che speravano nell'intervento francese:" Più che la servitù temo la libertà recata in dono".


    Ecco perché è sempre tempo di Resistenza.


    E' tempo di Resistenza perché guerre e violenze crudeli si manifestano ai confini d'Europa, in Mediterraneo, in Medio Oriente.


    E, ovunque sia tempo di martirio, di tirannia, di tragedie umanitarie che accompagnano i conflitti, lì vanno affermati i valori della Resistenza.


    Non esiste una condizione di "non guerra".


    O si promuove la pace e la collaborazione o si prepara lo scontro futuro.


    Per questo è stata lungimirante la scelta di quegli statisti che, dopo la tragedia della seconda guerra mondiale, ricostruirono l'Europa nell'integrazione politica ed economica.


    I patimenti sofferti hanno fatto sì che l'Italia (e con lei altri Paesi europei), scegliesse la strada del ripudio della guerra.


    A chi come i partigiani qui presenti - ai quali rivolgo il ringraziamento della comunità tutta intera - seppe interpretare il desiderio di pace del popolo italiano, va riconosciuto un merito storico.


    Settant'anni di pace ci sono stati consegnati dai nostri padri.


    A noi spetta il compito di continuare, di allargare il sentiero della concordia dentro l'Unione Europea e ovunque l'Europa può far sentire la sua voce e sviluppare la sua iniziativa.


    Le missioni di pace della comunità internazionale, alle quali responsabilmente partecipiamo, stanno a testimoniare la nostra sensibilità e la nostra coerenza.


    Non ci può essere pace soltanto per alcuni e miseria, fame, guerre, per altri: queste travolgerebbero anche la pace di chi pensa di averla conseguita per sempre.


    Di questo dobbiamo essere consapevoli e dobbiamo operare di conseguenza.


    Come non sostenere la battaglia della Liberazione dei popoli, anzitutto dal terrorismo, che affigge e destabilizza interi Paesi dell'Africa e del Medio Oriente e si riverbera in Europa ?


    Come reagire alle ingiustizie e alle violenze se non, ancora una volta, attraverso la tenace costruzione di un ordinamento internazionale che applichi il principio fondamentale della Dichiarazione universale dei Diritti dell'uomo: "tutti gli uomini sono uguali"?


    Il patto di cittadinanza determinato dalla scelta repubblicana ci ha permesso di crescere in coesione sociale, affrontando sfide, anche drammatiche, in questi sette decenni, eppure oggi è necessario essere consci che è la dimensione internazionale, a partire dall'Unione Europea, quella in cui vengono messi alla prova i motivi ispiratori della nostra convivenza.


    La Resistenza e la Repubblica, insieme con i movimenti di lotta antifascista degli altri Paesi europei, sono diventati storia e identità del nostro popolo. Hanno generato un ordinamento costituzionale che ci ha permesso di sviluppare diritti, opportunità, responsabilità diffuse.


    Oggi questa sfida riguarda l'Europa: per svolgere i suoi compiti è necessario che si consolidi un ordinamento europeo in grado di farne davvero un soggetto attivo di cooperazione e giustizia nel mondo globalizzato.


    Nella storia comune che abbiamo saputo costruire in questo dopoguerra, è legittimo e giusto guardare ai contrasti che ci hanno accompagnato con la saggezza della corresponsabilità di cui ci siamo caricati.


    Il 25 aprile 1945 e i giorni immediatamente successivi segnarono il ritorno alla democrazia in Italia, la sconfitta del nazifascismo in tutta Europa, la possibilità che il nostro Paese e tutta l'Europa sviluppassero in pace.


    C'è motivo di festa, dunque, oggi, per la rifondata identità italiana ed europea, per fare memoria della insurrezione generale proclamata dal Comitato nazionale di Liberazione Alta Italia, che portò a scacciare il nemico dalle principali città del Nord.


    Una festa che appartiene a tutti gli italiani amanti della libertà.


    Viva la Valsesia, con la sua Medaglia d'oro al valor Militare!


    Viva la Repubblica!


    Viva l'Italia!







     

  • Facts & Stories

    Italy's Ambassador to the US at NIAF- Frank J. Guarini Public Policy Forum Luncheon



    Honorable Armando Varricchio, newly-appointed Ambassador of Italy to the United States, will be the guest of honor at the NIAF-Frank J. Guarini Public Policy Forum Luncheon. Ambassador Varricchio will be welcomed to Capitol Hill by The Foundation’s leadership, U.S. Members of Congress, government officials, business and community leaders, media and other notables.
     
    Ambassador Varricchio will be discussing his vision for his tenure in the United States, and will welcome questions from the guests.
     
    The Co-Chairmen of the Italian American Congressional Delegation, Representatives Pat Tiberi(Ohio) and Bill Pascrell (N.J.), will introduce Ambassador Varricchio to Representatives Michael Capuano (Mass.); Virginia Foxx (N.C.); Joe Heck (Nev.) and Brad Wenstrup (Ohio). NIAF’s leadership will be represented by the Foundation’s President John M. Viola; Vice Chairs Patricia de Stacy Harrison and Gabriel A. Battista; the Foundation’s Government Relations and Public Policy Committee Chair Mark Valente lll, and Board member Anita Bevacqua McBride.


    Ambassador Varricchio began his career in Italy’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs in 1986. The following year, he was appointed to the Italian Embassy in Budapest. In 1992, he was appointed to the Italian Mission to the European Commission, in Rome. He served as counselor at the Prime Minister’s Office in charge of the European and Asia Desk in 1996. Four years later, he became chief of staff to the Minister for European Affairs; and then, in 1999, he was appointed diplomatic advisor to the President of the European Commission and personal representative (sherpa) at the G7 and G8 Summits in Okinawa, Genoa and Kananaskis (Alberta, Canada). He was posted in 2002 to the Italian Embassy in Washington, D.C., in charge of economic, trade and scientific affairs. On his return to Rome in 2006, he was appointed deputy diplomatic advisor to the President of the Republic and named Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary to Belgrade in 2009. Ambassador Varricchio returned again to Rome in 2012 to serve as deputy secretary general at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, before becoming, in 2013, the diplomatic advisor and G7 and G20 Sherpa of the Prime Minister. In 2014, he was promoted to the rank of Ambassador. In 2016, he was appointed Ambassador of Italy to the United States.
    NIAF is nonpartisan and serves as an important voice for Italian Americans in Washington, D.C. The Foundation works closely with Congress, The White House, the Department of State, the U.S. Embassy in Rome, and the Italian Embassy in Washington to promote Italian American heritage and serve as a bipartisan educational foundation. As a unified voice on issues of importance to Italian Americans, the Foundation builds relationships with key decision makers on behalf of the Italian American community and serves as a resource and thought leader for politicians, policy makers and diplomats. Visit www.niaf.org.

      

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