06/07/2017 - 12:18pm      12:18

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The melodies float through the cool air of a summer’s night. Lace and bodices twirl alongside double breasted jackets and gold braid, skimming smoothly over the ground, pirouetting as one in a dance of fleeting glances, of smiles and of tradition. It’s the magic of the waltz, floating gently down on Piazza Walther and bringing us back, in atmosphere at least, to the days of Empress Sissi, who, having left the Danube in search of the soothing warmer climes towards the south of the Empire, sojourned along the banks of the Adige.

Ladies and cavaliers, the clinking of crystal glasses, sparkling tiaras, patent leather shoes and crisp white linen… this is the night of “Piazza Walzer”, the event that transforms Bolzano city centre into a déjà vu glimpse into the 1800s for one single night, on 9 June. Afterwards the stage vanishes like Cinderella’s coach, and the next morning piazza Walther returns to its everyday goings-on and its long aperitifs seated in the armchairs of the bars in the square. The idea came about through the vision of the Hotel Città owners, whose doors open onto the square, and it was immediately welcomed with enthusiasm by the city.

For years now, it has been a fixed, unmissable event which has earned itself a place of honour in the hearts and minds of the city. From 7pm, free dance lessons are on offer for a last-minute practice, followed by an exhibition from the dance school students with choreography created for the occasion, and finally the official opening of the dance, at 9 pm, celebrated by the guest of honour for 2017, Gemma Bertagnolli, the opera singer born in Bolzano. Famed the world over for her soprano interpretations of a Baroque repertoire, she counts the Imperial House of Japan amongst her admirers. And the rest is pure music and magic.

(by Riccardo Valletti - Photos:Cristina Alberti) 


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