Valle d’Itria

The scenery is magic and to enjoy it all you have to cross towns like Alberobello, a UNESCO world heritage site with its 1400 trulli or Locorotondo, which takes its name from the circular plan of the town, dominated by cummerse, the ancient buildings with slanted roofs. The medieval centre of Cisternino, evokes the image of an oriental village with its houses painted lime and oil burners attached to slaughterhouses.Between July and August, take a trip to the beautiful baroque town of Martina Franca and attend the Festival della Valle d’Itria. The charming plain of Fasano, full of olive groves and close to the sea, is full of beautiful farmhouses transformed into spa resorts with golf courses and relaxing treatments and is only a few steps from Egnazia, one of the most important archaeological sites in Italy. Among Torre San Leonardo and Torre Canne meet the Parco Regionale delle Dune Costiere, a surprising landscape that stretches for 1100 hectares with its beautiful beach and its expansive farms with centuries-old olive trees. Ostuni, the white city, is a succession of arches, towers, palaces, courtyards, terraces, alleys, noble mansions and shops. Ceglie Messapica and Carovigno are important stops for food lovers with restaurants of international fame and award winning chefs

Martina Franca

When you walk in the city centre and get lost in the alleys, you will understand that Martina Franca is yet another baroque capital of Puglia. You will admire the mansions with wrought iron balconies, the rich portals with coats of arms and apotropaic masks, churches and monuments. Every corner exerts art and history. It surprises you with elegant detail, arches, secret gardens and squares that offer spectacular views, such as Piazza Plebiscito. Here stands the façade of the Basilica of San Martino, with its high relief of San Martin and the poor. Inside, notice the exquisite workmanship in the altar of polychrome marble and the stylish Cappellone del Santissimo Sacramento in late Baroque style.Pass Porta S. Antonio, also known as Arco di Santo Stefano and enter Piazza XX Settembre which is dominated by the Palazzo Ducale, built by Petracone V Caracciolo and today is the base of the town hall. It’s majestic, with its 300 rooms, all richly decorated by Domenico Carella in 1776.If you have a preference for sausage meat then this is the city for you. It was known and appreciated for his capocollo already in the Kingdom of Naples, since 1700. Since 2000 is Presidio Slow Food. Capocollo is prepared with meat of pigs,marinated in “cooked wine” and flavoured with herbs of the “Murgia dei trulli”.

Il Festival

Since its creation in 1975 – the Festival was initially promoted by Alessandro Caroli, who was its first president, with the support of Franco Punzi, then Mayor or Martina Franca, and Paolo Grassi, who was at the time the superintendent of La Scala– the Festival della Valle d’Itria, now presided by Franco Punzi and under the artistic direction of Alberto Triola, has always been rediscovering rare or little performed operas and other compositions. The festival’s productions stand out for the authenticity of their librettos(often unabridged) and their respect for voice types, in keeping with the scores and the original performances. The festival has contributed to the establishment of artists who would go on to write the history books, such as Mariella Devia,Martine Dupuy,Paolo Coni,Daniela Dessì,Patrizia Ciofi,Fabio Luisi and Renato Palumbo, to name but a few.The Festival has produced over one hundred operas to date, receiving seven Abbiati Prizes from the Associazione Nazionale Critici Musicali. Of rare beauty are the venues hosting the many events: the inner court of the Palazzo Ducale, centuries-old churches and cloisters, farmhouses and other little known places, all of them surrounded by the vineyards and majestic olive trees of the Valle d’Itria, and the southeastern hills of Murgia.

45 years of history internationally oriented

The festival’s success was helped by its staging of works such as Rossini’s Tancredi(in 1976, even before the Rossini Renaissance which characterised subsequent decades) and the original version of Bellini’s Norma, with the protagonist’s voice in a darker timbre than that of the young Adalgisa.From 1980, under the artistic direction of Rodolfo Celletti, the festival reaffirmed its original identity as a re-evaluation of the bel canto repertoire(from Monteverdi to early Romanticism) and the Neapolitan School, whose greatest stars were Puglia-born composers, without neglecting the vast European repertoire and, in particular, the appreciation of Italian bel canto elements in the work of non-Italian composers. Emblematic examples of operas included Adelaide di Borgogna and Semiramide by Rossini, L’incoronazione di Poppe aby Monteverdi,Giulio Cesare by Handel and Fra Diavolo by Auber. And also; Cherubini’s Medée in the original French with spoken dialogue, followed by masterpieces such as Meyerbeer’s Robert le diable, La Grande-Duchesse de Gérolste in by Offenbach, and the French version of Salomé by Richard Strauss.Nothing communicates the Made in Italy as opera: a universally known language; in the same way the products of the design, of fashion and food and wine communicate Italy.From this double vision derives the interest that companies have for opera as a tool for internationalisation

From July 16th to August 4th

Four opera titles, including the very rare Ecuba by Nicola Antonio Manfroce, great promise of the Italian music scene in the early Nineteenth Century, dead at only 22 years; concerts and series dedicated to chamber music, inside basilicas and cloisters of one of the most fascinating baroque pearls in Apulia.This is 45th Festival della Valle d’Itria.

The Festival… in Masseria

The most original project of the festival is, for sure, the Opera in Masseria. It is well appreciated and attended by both Italian and foreign enthusiasts.Opera takes place in a unique location: the apulian farmhouse. An opportunity to discover the most important symbol of the region, thanks to an opera project that will use outdoor spaces and will involve the audience in an original way.Thousands of spectators, coming from all over the world (Japan, France, Belgium, Netherlands, Germany), reach each year the beautiful city of MartinaFranca to attend the performances of the Valle d’Itria Festival: considered among the most appreciated and polished festivals in the operatic field . A high-level target consisting mainly of opera-lovers, collectors, art and luxury lovers who judge Festival della Valle d’Itria an opportunity to spend their holidays in Apulia based on culture and entertainment.

They say about us

One of the most sophisticated festivals in Italy.
Franco Fayenz – Il Giornale

Here in Martina Franca, philology triumphs .And in the moonlight in the airy atrium of the Ducal Palace, music makes its presence firmly known.
Gino Negri – Panorama

Puglia is there to be explored a little more each time, thanks to the Martina Franca festival.
Derna Querel – La Feluca

For me this isn’t just a festival, it’s a party too!
Luciana Serra – Quotidiano

Martina Franca has distinct connections with bel canto. An opportunity for opera-lovers, academics, and critics to come together.
Lamberto Puggelli – Quotidiano

Programme 2019

Sunday 14th July (Under 30) Il matrimonio segreto
Tuesday 16th July Il matrimoni segreto (D. Cimarosa)
Thursday 18th July Novecento e Oltre
Friday 19th July Concerto Sinfonico
Saturday 20th July Il matrimoni segreto (D. Cimarosa)
Sunday 21st July L’opera in masseria
Monday 22nd July Concerto per lo Spirito
Tuesday 23rd July Festival Junior
Wednesday 24th July Novecento e Oltre
Thursday 25th July L’opera in masseria
Saturday 27th July L’opera in masseria
Sunday 28th July (under 30) Ecuba
Monday 29th July L’opera in masseria
Tuesday 30th July Ecuba (N. A. Manfroce)
Wednesday 31st July Il matrimoni segreto (D. Cimarosa)
Thursday 1st August L’opera in masseria
Friday 2nd August Orfeo (N. Porpora)
Saturday 3rd August Il matrimoni segreto (D. Cimarosa)
Sunday 4th August Ecuba (N. A. Manfroce)

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