Festival Watch
The Magic of I Castelli Animati
Pierre Floquet · From fps #6 · January 1, 2006 | Forget about the trip, the connecting flights, the traffic jams on the Roman ring-road. Reach Genzano di Roma, and let the magic take hold! The magic of the location, the welcome from I Castelli Animati team, and the smartly selected films by artistic director Luca Raffaelli.

Genzano di Roma is a part of the villages known as the Castelli Romani. They lie on small volcanic mountains, just South of Rome. They have been able to preserve rich antique and historical features. Wealthy Romans used to come here in the summer to take shelter from the heat of the town; and the trend has been maintained over the centuries. Castles replaced villas, then monasteries, churches and Renaissance palaces were built in their turns, inhabited by the Pope and many aristocrats. Needless to say, the area is very rich in historical sites, not to mention the medieval streets and old houses that have been preserved. The volcanic past of the area has not only left two splendid crater lakes—and the theatre housing the festival is within walking reach of an impressive panorama from the older part of the village overlooking the Lake of Nemi—but it has also granted the surrounding hills with fertile land. For centuries, there has been a tradition of vine growing, so one can enjoy great Italian food with the famous local Castelli wines!

To sum it up, Genzano di Roma is not just a place that hosts a festival; it has a soul of its own, which the town officials quite genuinely and spontaneously know how to share with the festival goers.

Want to read the rest of this festival review?

You'll find it and many other articles in the January 2006 issue of fps, available for only 99 cents US.
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