If you are among those this summer have preferred to make small trips outside the city rather than long holidays abroad, due to the economic crisis, here is a proposal to combine art and history. "The Moons of Pompeii" are back again this year and after an extraordinary opening every day from August 12th to 21st, will return to accompany every weekend until the end of October the curious who want to admire the ruins of Pompeii without losing the magic of theater.
The first thing to do, once you have decided to take part in this particular evening, is to go to the website The Moons of Pompeii, select the book section (prenota) and from there select the date and time still available.
At that point, just remember to wear a suitable walking shoes, comfortable for walking in the dark in the midst of the ruins and then just get
involved from the show that you have in front.
Eight moons for eight locations, eight moons that show eight different aspects of life in Pompeii before Mount Vesuvius decides to turn it into a museum under the open sky, a snapshot taken in 79 AD. Everything is designed to engage the viewer: the darkness illuminated only by a few torches along the way, the silence broken by the voices and sounds of the market, by the noise of the arena or by the narrator who reveals the secrets of the ancient Pompeii. And despite the many crashes that occurred in the archaeological site last year and the continuous funding cuts on culture that have an impact on this reality, at the end of the show you are simply amazed by this little piece of Italy that works. The event is organized by the city of Pompeii in collaboration with the Archaeological Superintendence of Naples and Pompeii and financed by European funds.
The route begins an hour after sunset, with groups departures every 20 minutes, and takes about 90 minutes. The cost of the visit is 20 euros per person, but the price worth it.
Each group has a guide that accompanies the public along the route,
where the narrator voice of Luca Ward virtually guide through the various stops.
The most compelling is the one at the Garden of the Fugitives, where the story of
the eruption becomes reality with the huddled bodies of those who tried
to escape from the ash and lapilli. These casts were made thanks to the intuition of the former director Giuseppe
Fiorelli, putting liquid plaster into the cavities that were found
during excavations: in this way the afraid expressions of the victims and the dogs still on a leash seem to be revitalized.
The vision of these casts is one of the most exciting moments of the
visit, in which the game between the "vacuum" of missing persons and the
"full" of memories left involves the silent audience in the
moonlight, pointing out that just what you do not see is what does not die in a man.
The route continues through the visit of other important villas as the home of the perfumer or the villa of Octavian Quartio, before concluding the tour in the Amphitheatre going through the same door that has been used by the gladiators. The thrill of being at the center of the Arena, even with the full moon, is strong but a little criticism should be make and at least the smoke bombs at the end could be avoided.
The organizers were able to do, this year too, an exciting event despite money cuts and economic controversy after the collapse of the Schola Armatorum. And the visitors, when they leave behind the old Pompeii late at night, will still think about the image of a graffiti discovered in the excavations: "Hic sunt felices," we are happy here, wrote the inhabitants of the destroyed city. And wandering through the ruins in the moonlight is not difficult to understand why they were happies.
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