August 15 - August 29
An event every year that begins at 12:00 am on day 15 of August, repeating indefinitely
It’s the summer and in August many Italians are looking forward to Ferragosto which starts on August 15th. It’s known as a two-week vacation period with roots in ancient Rome. When Emperor Augustus invented the feriae Augusti to mark the end harvest he also made it a moment that signified a period of well-deserved rest. Later, during the fascist regime, this time of the year was used to promote travel within the country, including discounts on train voyages to see all the beauty that Italy has to offer. Today it is still a largely celebrated holiday.
In Rome, on the evening of August 15th (the Feast of the Assumption), the piazze are filled with the performances of professional dancers for the Gran Ballo di Ferragosto. Squares throughout the city are enlivened by performances of all walks of life, from tango to rock, hip-hop, ballroom dancing, and more, with a giant concert in the Parco Archeologico of Teatro Marcello, as well!
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Photo credit: Romano Guidotti, flickr.com