Italy, Le Roncole – Following Verdi
Italy offers many interesting sights to admire. People love the country for fashion, nature, cuisine, and art as well. Yet this country is also home to great music. Today we visit the small village of Le Roncole. One of world's most famous music composers – Giuseppe Verdi was born in this very village.
When walking on fields, plains, alleys and villages of Emilia Romagna soon you will get the feeling that you won't meet any tourist here in such a peaceful region. But you would be mistaken. Le Roncole is a small, inconspicuous village where many travel to. They want to visit a famous native the name of which they adopted as the name of their village. Roncole Verdi is the name which welcomes you at the doorstep of the village.
They are ready for tourists here. You may leave your car on a large car park near the birth house of the famous music composer Verdi. It is hard to miss. A large table points out to his hous withh the words "Casa Natale Giuseppe Verdi" and a bronze bust of the composer made in the year 1913.
The house features a modern audiovisual exposition. Don't forget to check its opening hours on the webiste of the museum. Also, there you may learn the admission price or book a guided tour. Featured is also information on combined tickets.
A cold house free of any decoration had only several rooms. Its location on a junction destined it to be an inn. Well, it was more a pub / grocery. Carlo Verdi, a butcher by profession and an innkeeper, worked there. His wife Luisa Uttini was engaged in washing clothes and maintaining their apartment on the upper floor. The house became a sigh of national significance in the year 1901.
When closed, museum's windows are covered by shutters. Yet you can still peak through one of them and enjoy some treasures of the past. You can see staircase leading to a closed room upstairs. Giuseppe Fortunino Francesco Verdi was born here to Luisa on Sunday 10. 10. 1813.
Opposite to the house, there is a new inn which operates thanks to tourists. Here you may sit on a terrace while drinking coffee and enjoy the vista over Verdi's native house.
Should you continue along the summer terrace to the green, you will discover a well with cold and fresh water. As it is common in Italy, every town or village has its own well with fresh water. Thus vilalgers can refresh themselves in summer heat. In this corner of the village, there is a small memorial to Verdi. At least probably. Well, who else could be depicted on it while playing piano?
This walkway beginning at the house gets us to medieval church of San Michele arcangelo which received its current facelift in the 16th and 17th century. The three aisle church is adorned by frescoes Verdi was baptised. In his childhood he was an altar boy and played his first notes on church organ. A dominant belfry became a place of rescue for the little Verdi who with his mother found refuge agianst Russian troops crossing the village while plundering it.
There is a cemetery behind the church. Italian catholic journalist and writer Giovannini Guareschi (4. 5. 1908 Fontanelle di Roccabianca – 22. 6. 1968) is burried there. He created the famous Don Camillo character.
Le Roncole is a peaceful place where you can stop by while traveling across Emilia Romagna. Even the Busseto trader Antonio Barezzi stopped here often at Carla Verdiho inn. And he stopped there not only for wine which Verdi bought for his inn. Barezzi was also interested in musical talent of innkeeper's son thus he became his first patron. In the year 1824, Giuseppe left to get his musical education in Busseto, five kilometers away. But for long years has he walked (with shoes in his hands to not to damage them) to earn his daily bread by playing on Busseto organ in Roncola.
GPS: 44°57'06.8"N 10°04'20.3"E
Text and photos: Anna Nociarová
Edited by: Infoglobe
Překlad: Stanislava Waniová
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We haven't left Busseto yet. We moved from its center to the outskirts of the city and to Sant'Agata three miles away. There is a farmhouse where fill the missing pieces of our knowledge of Verdi's life.
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