Divinamente NYC: Meet Pamela Villoresi

Francesca Giuliani (May 19, 2011)
The festival of art and spirituality is back in NYC: i-Italy interviews Pamela Villoresi, artistic director

The third season of the Divinamente NYC festival just opened on May 18. Pamela Villoresi, the Artistic Director of the festival, told i-Italy that when she first launched the festival in 2008 her goal was to “create an intercultural stage for peace, reciprocal knowledge and brotherhood”.


The idea of taking the festival to New York was suggested to Villoresi before the first Roman season of Divinamente had even started: “I was in New York visiting a friend and I noticed that the newspaper AmericaOggi had published half a page on the festival, inviting the readers to go to Rome during the Easter holidays to attend it.”

Pamela Villoresi

Scena dallo spettacolo

"An Angel In The Slums"

The success of Divinamente NYC was stunning from the very beginning.

“In the American appointment we invite Italian artists to perform. It is a way of promoting our talents and help them grow internationally”, Villoresi explained.

The title of this year’s season of Divinamente NYC is “Fratelli di Terra” (Italian for “Brothers of Land”). The festival will revolve around the concept of “Promised Land”, celebrating the 150th anniversary of the Unification of Italy and approaching the topic from philosophical, musical and theatrical points of view.

“It is a way of broadening the discussion on the concept of Nation”, Villoresi said. “It is a way to talk about the sacrifices our ancestors made to unify Italy, but also about the great efforts of those Italians who had no other option but to emigrate – Italians that honored Italy even if they were living far from their homeland”.

“New Italians” will also play a primary role in Villoresi’s festival. The show “An Angel in the Slums”, that will take place at the Asia Society on May 21, will feature young Chinese-Italian actors from the theater workshops Villoresi organized in Prato. The Tuscan city counts 100,000 inhabitants, 40% of whom are Chinese immigrants. The integration process in Prato hasn’t always been smooth, and Villoresi’s project to help second generation immigrants express their artistic talent is remarkable.

Villoresi thinks that New York can teach a thing or two about how integration should be dealt with: “Being here is a great learning opportunity. The integration process in Italy has still to be initiated.”

In Villoresi’s opinion, New York is also the ideal location to discuss the topics of identity, spirituality and intercultural dialogue: “It might be the city of business, but New York has a great soul.” 



Wednesday, May 18th, 6:00 PM

SACRED HOME, Round Table

Debate on the theme of a "promised land", exile, acceptance, or rejection in another society. Speakers will include representatives of 4 major religions. Reading of selected poems from "Fratelli di terra"

Italian Cultural Institute

686 Park Avenue

RSVP 212-879-4242, ext. 365


Thursday, May 19th, 6:00 PM


A tribute to the poet Giosue Carducci directed and performed by Pamela Villoresi live music by Luciano Vavolo

Italian Cultural Institute

686 Park Avenue

RSVP 212-879-4242, ext. 365


Friday, May 20th, 8:00 PM


(US premiere)

Sacred cantata in 9 movements for orchestra, chorus, soprano and narrator composed by Monsignor Marco Frisina

Saint Cecilia's Parish

120 East 106th Street



Suggested donation $20

Saturday, May 21st, 8:00 PM


(US premiere)

A theatrical production directed by Gianluca Barbadori with performers from the Italian and Chinese communities of Prato

Asia Society

The Lila Acheson Wallace Auditorium

725 Park Avenue (at 70th Street)



$15 for Asia Society and ICI members, $18 for students, $20 for general public


Sunday, May 22nd, 2:30 PM

(US premiere)
The event is presented by the museum and the Centro Primo Levi for Italian Studies at the Center for Jewish History. For the first time in the US, the Choir of the "Tempio Maggiore" conducted by the renowned tenor Claudio Disegni and featuring the hazan of Rome, Alberto Funaro, and organist Federico del Sordo, will expose the New York public to the unique flavors and variations of the liturgical tradition of the Jews of Rome. 
Museum of Jewish Heritage .
36 Battery Place

Manhattan, NY 10004
For information, call (646) 437-4200 or go to www.mjhnyc.org.






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