Verdi comes alive in Italy, in his 200th year birthday
BUSSETO - Agence France-Presse
Artists performing “Othello, the Moor of Venice” by composer Giuseppe. AFP photoOpera maestro Giuseppe Verdi, whose bicentenary is being celebrated on Oct 10, is “still alive” in Italy, especially for the inhabitants of his native village of Busseto.
The world famous composer’s family home is surprisingly humble. On a crossroads, the grocery owned by his parents is on just one floor and has a handful of rooms, including a small stable.
Mario Rossin and Laura Manfrenatto, a couple who have come to visit from Rovigo near Venice, said they wanted to be present for the 200th birthday of “our Verdi”, born on October 10, 1813.
“It is thanks to him that our country is known in the whole world with operas like ‘Aida’ and ‘Rigoletto’,” Rossin told AFP. “Our three sons are at the conservatory and we know how difficult it is to choose music and study when you are not from a rich family,” she said. Verdi only managed to complete his musical studies thanks to the patronage of a wealthy merchant from Busseto after his talent was noticed by his teacher at school, an organist at the local church. The house of his rich patron, Antonio Barezzi, is in the centre of the village on what is now Giuseppe Verdi Square.