Condemned to death, thrown into the sea and even burnt. Don't call Amnesty . . . it's Carnival time!
|Condemned to death, thrown into the sea and even burnt. It's not easy being the spirit of Carnival! ItaliaPlease brings you a host of Carnival celebrations. Join us as we party all the way from Venice to Sicily.|
| VENICE |
The theme of this year's Carnival is travel and travellers. For a day-to-day guide to events check out the offical site www.carnivalofvenice.com (available in six languages) where you'll also get all you need to know on Venice during Carnival period. If you go to Venice, take a break from all the revellery and visit the Etruscan exhibition. Find out more at www.palazzograssi.it
More links to the Venice Carnival:
Papier-mache craftsmen spend the eight months prior to Carnival making the wonderful topical floats that distinguish Viareggio's Carnival. Thousands of people come to the Tuscan coastal town each year to watch the parades and take part in the fun. Go there on February 11-18-25-27 to see the Grand Parades.
The Carnival's official site is packed with information and pictures on both past and current events:
Weird and Wonderful Carnivals
| ORISTANO |
Sardinia's most famous Carnival is also known for its Sartiglia, a horse race which takes place through the streets of the town on Shrove Tuesday. People queue from early morning in order to get the best places. Before the race an old lady leads a group of virgins to dress the "componidori", or jockeys. Oristano's Carnival, dates back to the 16th century and is full of quaint rituals and traditions. www.sartiglia.com - ita -
Here Carnival begins on Saint Stephen's night (December 26) and continues until February 26, when, in a disconcerting ceremony, it receives last rites before dying. Putignano is famous for its colourful floats and satiric street theatre. Each Thursday during Carnival young actors and actresses take to the streets organising practical jokes and lively sketches. No one or thing is sacred but be warned if you are a priest, widow or widower, single or suspect your beloved is doing the dirty on you . . .
The Carnival at Ronciglione is famous for its 'red noses'. 300 red-nosed men and women, dressed in nightshirts and carrying huge wooden forks, mingle with the crowds offering steaming portions of pasta, served from potties. Whatever you do, don't turn down their offer - you could get the pasta thrown at you! On the last Saturday of Carnival don't miss Ronciglione's unique horse race - where the horse race without jockeys.
The Carnival of Ronciglione
The organizers claim that this is the most beautiful Carnival in Sicily. It dates back to the 1700s when revellers bombarded each other with rotten eggs but has toned down considerably in recent years. Highlights include the parade of the local aristocracy with their magnificent papier-mache masks.
Ivrea Carnival is famous for its furious battles where oranges are used as weapons. During the last three days of festivities more than 3000 people reenact the past rebellion of the townspeople against the ruling tyrants. Things tend to get out of control and each year a number of people end up in hospital. http://www.carnevalediivrea.com
In Tufara, to the glee of onlookers, a figure representing Carnival is tried, executed and then thrown off a cliff. The devil then descends on the body and scatters the remains over the surrounding countryside.
Campobasso EPT - Tourist Office (tel. 0874/415662)
Fano Carnival is one of the oldest in Italy and here too, much to the delight of both young and old, sweets and pastries and thrown to the crowd. Watch out for the legendary Musica 'Arabita' Band (arabita comes from arrabbiata, angry). The band parades through the town playing a motley selection of instruments varying from coffee pots to jugs, umbrellas, bottles and bins.
http://www.carnevaledifano.com/ - ita -