Friday, February 26, 2010

Sanremo 2010

Sanremo is the most famous festival of Italian music. This year the event celebrated it's 60th edition and was presented by Antonella Clerici.

It would appear that I was not alone watching it this year as ratings for the show were very high.

This years event was won by Valerio Scanu. An ex-student of the talent show Amici, his victory has created much talk about the voting system for the festival. His song 'Per tutti i volte che...' however is not bad and has already become a hit both on radio and in sales.

Video of Valerio Scanu singing the winning song at Sanremo:

The winner of the new generation award (younger artists) was Tony Maiello. He too has a past in a talent show (this time x-factor) however there seems to be less upset over his win.

Malika Ayane won the critics award given by the press. Many, including myself, would have liked to see her as the winner of the festival.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Video: io canto

Io Canto is a popular TV programme launched this year in Italy. The show is presented by Gerry Scotti (one of the most popular TV hosts in Italy) and features the singing talents of a group of children between the ages of 7 and 15 years. The programmes airs every Saturday evening on canale 5 of mediaset. The super talented children sing both Italian and international songs.

Here is the opening preformance of the first episode:

Monday, February 15, 2010

Famous Italian: Morgan

Morgan recently hit the headlines in Italy, this time, due to his exclusion from Sanremo and a supposed drugs scandal. His position on Italian TV is now being questioned and the whole issue has launched many discussions on and off air about similar cases involving other V.I.P.s

Marco Castoldi better known by his stage name Morgan (born in Milano, Italy on 23 December 1972) is an Italian singer, musician and multi-instrumentalist. He is also a judge for three years in the Italian version of The X Factor winning the first three series through acts he mentored, Aram Quartet (series 1 - 2008), Matteo Becucci (series 2 - 2008-9) and Marco Mengoni (in series 3 - 2009).
He is also a founding member of Bluvertigo,an Italian band formed in 1992. Bluvertigo's first name was "Golden Age" and other founding mmebers included Andy (Andrea Fumagalli) and Marco Pancaldi.

Their first album was released in 1995, Acidi e basi, followed in 1997 by Metallo non metallo and in 1999 by Zero: they were later called "la trilogia chimica" ("the chemical trilogy") because every title has a reference to chemistry and the initial letters (AB-MN-Z) are respectively the first, the central and the last ones of the alphabet. Their latest album is Pop Tools, a compilation released in 2001. In 2003 Morgan released his first solo album: Le canzoni dell'appartamento.

MTV Storytellers was released in 2008, a live recording of a concert performed for MTV. A music video for "Fuori Dal Tempo" can be found on the MTV Storytellers DVD.

Present members are: Morgan (Marco Castoldi) (on vocals, bass, piano), Andy (Andrea Fumagalli) (on keys, sax , synths, vocals), Sergio Carnevale (drums and percussions), Livio Magnini (guitar).
Morgan had lived with actress Asia Argento with whom has a daughter born in 2001.

Find more information at or his official website

Friday, February 12, 2010

St. Valentine gift or homeschoolers resource

Who was Saint Valentine? Why do we celebrate this festival on February 14th? How is the festival celebrated in Italy? and many more are answered in this short e-book about one of the most popular day's of the year.

This short ebook makes a nice Valentines Day present. It downloads immediately and so is ideal as a last minute gift too:)

It can also be used as a resource for homeschoolers wanting to know more about this much celebrated event. 

Get your copy today here

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Tivoli Carnival 2010

Carnival is celebrated throughout Italy over January and February each year. Some of the smaller towns have the biggest and best parades though. Tivoli is one well worth visiting.
From mid-January until mid-February, Tivoli gets taken over with 'carnival fever'. Face painters can be found daily on the main streets to decorate the childrens faces. The main square is in almost constant party mode, with stalls, music, competitions and games.
Each Sunday there is a big parade of decorated floats and people in costumes that goes round the main streets ending up in the main square.
Great fun for the whole family!

Here's a few photo's from this years carnival:

Monday, February 8, 2010

Famous Italian: Fiorello

Rosario Tindaro Fiorello (born 16 May 1960), also known just as Fiorello, is an Italian singer and also a radio and television presenter.

Fiorello was born in Augusta, Sicily. He began his career working in tourist villages, first as a barman, and then as an entertainer. Near the end of the 1980s, Fiorello met Claudio Cecchetto, a talent-scout. Soon afterwards, Fiorello began hosting the show "Viva Radio Deejay".

Having become popular through the TV show Karaoke, Fiorello went on to host various different TV shows. Soon after, he endured a period of drug problems that kept him away from the world of TV. However, he returned to show business and television in the 1990s, displaying great abilities as a showman, first in the Mediaset networks, then with RAI in 2001, 2002, and 2004 with Stasera Pago Io.

Since 2002, Fiorello has hosted the radio broadcast Viva Radio 2 together with Marco Baldini, Francesco Bozzi and Enrico Cremonesi, during which Fiorello shows off his skills as a singer, mimic and entertainer. In the summer of 2005, a CD was published that collected the best of his radio career. The CD's high points include: the imitation of Mike Bongiorno and the Forgetful of Cologno (Berlusconi). The CD also includes imitations of Andrea Camilleri, Antonio Cassano, Carlo Azeglio Ciampi, Gianni MinĂ , Franco Califano, Carla Bruni, Oliviero Toscani, Marina Flaibani from Onda Verde, Nanni Moretti, Vittorio Cecchi Gori, Ignazio La Russa, the prince Albert of Monaco, Monica Bellucci and her husband Vincent Cassel.

Fiorello's skills as a vocalist have brought him to the cinema as well. He has participated in such varied roles as: a dubber in cartoons (most recently Garfield), to an appearance in the film The Talented Mr. Ripley, in which he portrays Renato Carosone.

His younger brother Giuseppe Fiorello is an actor.

Fiorello's most famous imitations include Mike Bongiorno, and that of Silvio Berlusconi as a character called Smemorato di Cologno who, in the parody, loses his memory every time something related to communism is mentioned. Smemorato di Cologno is a pun on the main character of the Italian comedy 'Lo smemorato di Collegno', Cologno being instead the headquarters of Berlusconi's well-known media company.

Find out more about Fiorello at

Friday, February 5, 2010

Italian for homeschoolers

FREE Homeschoolers Kit now available to download. Learning Italian has never been so easy. All the answers to the exercises can be found in your copy of ITALIAN FOR TOURISTS: POCKET EDITION!

Italian for tourists: Pocket Edition is available to buy from Now also available on and other online bookstores!

Italian For Tourists is a basic guide to the Italian language covering phrases and words most needed by tourists. It includes all the words and phrases a tourist is likely to need during their stay in Italy as well as a pronunciation guide and a map of Italy. It is divided into 17 sections to help you find what you are looking for in the shortest possible time.

ISBN: 978-1-4092-7826-9

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Map of Italy

Planning on taking a trip to Italy? A lot of different cities can be easily visited during a short trip. In just a couple of hours you can get from Rome to Naples on a train or Milan to Florence. Take a look at the map below and start thinking about which places you'd like to visit.

Monday, February 1, 2010

Famous Italian: Maria De Filippi

Maria De Filippi (born 5 December 1961) is an Italian television host.

De Filippi was born in Milan, Lombardy, but grew up in Pavia where her family transferred when she was ten years old. She is married to talk show host Maurizio Costanzo with whom she has an adopted son.

She has hosted numerous talk shows broadcast by Mediaset's Canale 5 such as Uomini and donne and C'e posta per te. From 1993 until the present day (December 2009), she has hosted on Canale 5 the talent show Amici, which changed its name in 2002 to Amici di Maria De Filippi. Similar to the American series Fame, it features a school with two groups of aspiring young singers and dancers who compete against the other, performing live before an audience, and a panel of judges and instructors. Albanian-born dancer Kledi Kadiu is a regular performer on the programme.

She has won numerous awards over the years for her programmes and is one of Italy's most well known presenters.


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