Lake Como has a schedule of international cultural events every summer in a number of locations around the lake. The splendour of its villas and parks are the perfect setting, gifting visitors, locals and home owners’ memorable experiences.
Every July the city of Como hosts three weeks of events in the beautiful Villa Olmo, a neoclassical villa with lakeside gardens open all year round. Villa Olmo was built in 1812 when Lombardy was one of the liveliest cultural scenes in Europe. Every year Villa Olmo is the venue for the most important international art exhibition in the north of Italy. Among the many performances in this year’s events were:
– Giuseppe Verdi’s Traviata conducted by Francesco Pasqualetti – part of La Traviata was written on Lake Como, so it is an appropriate backdrop.
– Eleonora Abbagnato ‘première danseuse’ of the Opéra in Paris
– Soul singer Mario Biondi
The spotlight is now on Villa Erba in Cernobbio, one of the most representative 19th century Italian lake villas with a lakefront botanical garden. In the 20th century the Villa was owned by an aristocratic Milanese family and was later inherited by the Count Luchino. It was then bought by Visconti di Modrone, one of the most important film directors and screenwriters of the past century and later bought by the city of Cernobbio to make it a renowned exposition centre.
From the 4th – 12th of August Villa Erba will host a number of internationally acclaimed Italian songwriters and musicians alternating jazz, classical compositions and tango rhythms in what can best be described as ‘musical contamination’. In the spirit of the festival, entrance to the performances is free. Among the artists is award-winning Italian virtuoso pianist Christian Leotta who has a home in Como and will perform Beethoven’s sonatas on the 9th of August.
The city of Menaggio will be a showcase for guitar enthusiasts hosting for the 6th year the International Guitar Festival on the 25th and 26th of August. There are 9 venues in total where you will be able to find the musicians the Grand Hotel di Menaggio.
This is only a small selection of the cultural events that Lake Como has on offer every summer to entertain residents and visitors who are looking for Italian lifestyle and culture.