A lifetime on the square
During the 60's and 70's, when the theater artists were looking for innovative forms of expression, challenging art forms and cultural norms, Valerio Festi chose a platform to promote his work: the square, the city, the sky.
Entered at the University of Bologna to study Science of Entertainment (graduate in 1977 with a thesis on the City Festivals). At this time he starts exploring new methods of theatrical communication, aiming to engage and excite the audience.
Inspired by the poetic of the Renaissance and Baroque tradition, takes its singularities and turns them into visionary fantasy and theoretical research; starting to produce great social events through socio-political and cultural content that manifest his poetical manifesto: il fin, la meraviglia
Developing this innovative and unique artistic path, soon displays the conviction that "celebration" - whether it is urban celebration, commemoration, inauguration or an opening of a sporting event - should have its own communicative power in order to make impact, to benefit the territories in the form of a cultural event that provides notoriety, culture and ultimately, short-term and long-term economic benefits.
For more than thirty years, Valerio Festi imagines and produces open-air events for festivals and ceremonies with concerts for fireworks with live orchestra and stage machineries that engage the audience's imagination;
Decoding the environment adaptation, promoting the nature of the religious and civic holidays by reinterpreting their traditions into contemporary terms to create an imaginary world that increases acknowledgement, a moment where the community recognizes itself.
Valerio worked in close collaboration with playwright and director Monica Maimone, helping to define the revolutionary developments in the environmental events. The Maestro can transform places and urban spaces, bringing significant concept and new meanings.
His artistic activity boosts energy and enthusiasm: such as New Year celebration, Christmas, Carnival, Religious celebrations that honor the saints or civic events under reflection or introspection aspect, or even meditation, grief and hope like the Luminarie held in Kobe, where the installations of light, produced by Valerio Festi, is annually celebrated after the terrible earthquake of 1995.
During his career, Valerio has designed great installations and large-scale celebrative events for over 200 cities, including cities as Paris, Moscow, Madrid, Tokyo, Hong Kong, Prague, Reykjavik, Houston, where he was awarded by the Institute of Architects of USA, Milan, Bogota, Beijing, Lisbon, Bilbao, Sydney, Toronto, Turin. Valerio Festi linked his name to the opening Ceremony of the XX Olympic Winter Games, and Rome, as the author of the opening Ceremony of the 13th FINA World Championships.
His latest achievements have been viewed in New York and Rome, in Brazil (where he was active for four years in Rio de Janeiro, Gravatá, Curitiba, Sao Paulo), most recently in Moscow where he was critically acclaimed and received the "Best Design" award during the International Festival "Xmas Light" for the three light installations produced in the heart of the city.