Federico Fellini’s Passion for Cinema

January 20 marks the 100th birthday of the legendary director  Federico Fellini. In a business built on dreams, he  may have been the biggest dreamer of all. As a boy, Fellini  kept a sketch pad and colored pencils by his bed so he could record his vivid fantasies when he woke. His lifelong passion was transforming these nocturnal visions into stories to share with the world.

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Italy’s Passion for Food

A passion for food merits a precise word in Italian: golosità (from gola, for throat), which goes beyond appetite, craving, gluttony, or hunger. Friends proudly declare themselves “golosi,” often for a dish made only in their hometowns, only with local ingredients, only with a recipe handed down from a great-grandmother to a grandmother to a mother.

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Italy’s Final Holiday Feast

Long after many Americans have taken down their Christmas trees and packed away the decorations, Italians continue to celebrate. The final feast is l’Epifania (Epiphany), on January 6, which commemorates the arrival of i re magi, the three kings who followed the bright Christmas star to bring gifts for Baby Jesus. 

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Celebrating an Italian New Year

New Year’s Eve as we know it was an invention of the ancient Romans. In 153 B.C. they moved the start of the new year from the Spring equinox to January 1 and dedicated the first month  of the year to Janus, the two-faced god of beginnings, who looks back toward the old year and ahead toward the new one.

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Italy’s Three Christmas Feasts

Most families in Italy begin celebrating il Natale on the evening of December 24 (la vigilia di Natale) with a big dinner. Because Christmas Eve is a vigilia di magro (a day of abstinence on which the Catholic Church prohibits the consumption of meat), the centerpiece...

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Italian Christmas Traditions

“Natale con i tuoi; Pasqua con chi vuoi,” Italians say. “Christmas with your family; Easter with whomever you want.” An Italian Christmas centers on stare insieme in famiglia (being together as a family). Here are some of the most beloved traditions among Italian families…

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La Passione
Mona Lisa
La Bella Lingua