Barezzi Road is the name given to this theatrical review involving various artists performing at the majestic Teatro Verdi in Busseto Parma, home of world famous composer Giuseppe Verdi who was born and bred here and indeed, the raison d’etre of tonight’s event. The artists, as well as their own songs, are expected to perform personalised interpretations of songs by Verdi.

Giuseppe Verdi was an Italian opera composer whose works like ‘Rigoletto’, ‘Il Trovatore’ and ‘La Traviata’ remain extremely popular and are staged all over the world. Barezzi Road and indeed the Barezzi festival itself in November, aims to acknowledge and celebrate quality music with a nod to another of Busseto’s sons Antonio Barezzi who funded Verdi’s studies and development inspired by his great admiration and belief in the young boy Giuseppe.

The artists are Ferdinando, a young Italian singer/rap songwriter; Roberta Giallo, a most original theatrical singer and performer; Emma Morton & the Graces, an innovative folk/rock band led by the Scottish born Emma and finally Delta V, a well-known Italian band born in the 1990’s, which after a 13 year hiatus had original founder members Carlo Bertotti and Flavio Ferri, along with new vocalist Martina Albertini, return this year with a new album “Heimat” in tow.

Verdi songs celebrate the spirit of Italy’s Emilia Romagna region and often have dances and “brindisi” i.e toasts in their fabric and is probably why the music and lyrical messages have relevance today where celebrating life is always in vogue. The music has this energy and grandeur that lift’s and exalts body and soul.

Between the bands performances on an on screen separé, letters, written by Verdi to Antonio Barezzi among others, were projected on to it giving insights to this genius and how very political and anti-establishment he was. Letters expressing his love for Paris and the docks of London, his love for his native homeland were charming whilst a Verdi soundtrack played in the theatre.

All in all a very culturally enhancing experience thanks to the ability of meshing the old and the new, the past and the present through music and theatre something that Italy still manages to replicate successfully.