Pesaro succeeds Bergamo and Brescia as culture capital.
Italy’s president Sergio Mattarella on Saturday will attend a ceremony to launch Pesaro, a city on the Adriatic coast, as Capitale Italiana della Cultura 2024.
The opening ceremony will be held in the morning at the Vitrifrigo Arena, with celebrations continuing throughout the day including shows, food and music for all generations, in what mayor Matteo Ricci says will be “a huge party that will last all day”.
More than 300 cultural events are planned in the seaside city over the course of the year, featuring 150 artists, according to the Pesaro2024 website.
Pesaro won the culture capital status two years ago, with its presentation La natura della cultura, beating nine other finalists vying for the coveted title.
Located in the central Italian region of Le Marche, Pesaro is the birthplace of composer Gioacchino Rossini and is famous for its opera festival.
The city’s best known sites include the 15th-century Ducal Palace and Rocca Costanza castle, as well as its Romanesque-Gothic Basilica, built between the fifth and 14th centuries.
A brief history of Italy’s Capitals of Culture
Launched in Italy in 2014, the first culture Italian capitals were Cagliari, Lecce, Perugia, Ravenna and Siena in 2015, Mantua in 2016, Pistoia in 2017 and Palermo in 2018.
The Italian title skipped a year in 2019 when Matera, in the southern Basilicata region, became the European Capital of Culture.
In 2020 it was the turn of Parma to receive Italy’s culture capital status, with the north Italian city retaining the title for a second year to make up for the negative effects of the covid lockdowns.
Bergamo and Brescia jointly held the 2023 Capital of Culture title after Italy bypassed the usual application process in a “symbol of rebirth” for the two northern cities devastated by the covid pandemic.
The Sicilian city of Agrigento, famed for its rich archaeological heritage, will be the Italian Capital of Culture in 2025.
The following are competing to win Italy’s 2026 Culture Capital title: Agnone (Isernia), Alba (Cuneo), Gaeta, L’Aquila, Latina, Lucera (Foggia), Maratea (Potenza), Rimini, Treviso, and the Unione dei Comuni Valdichiana Senese (Siena).
For more details see the Italian culture ministry website.