June in Rome is nothing short of glorious, and this year doubly so, with vivid exhibit stellar concerts, spectacular once-a-year events, and much more.
Festa della Repubblica – Sunday 2
Here in Rome, the national holiday isn’t spent watching fireworks or eating hot dogs but instead with a spectacular military parade along Via dei Fori Imperiali, an aeronautical display over the Colosseum featuring smoke trails in Italy’s patriotic red, green, and white, and much more. You can also commemorate the 73rd year of Italy’s decision to become a republic with a (free!) visit to the presidential gardens at Palazzo Quirinale, a site only open one day a year. Be sure to get there early! festadellarepubblica.it
Pantheon Roses – Sunday 9
Inside the best preserved and arguably most beautiful ancient building in Rome, a tradition takes place that you won’t want to miss. Every year, following the 10:30am mass for the Feast of Pentecost, the Rome Fire Department sends tens of thousands of red rose petals fluttering down through the Pantheon’s oculus, creating a magnificent spectacle for those lucky enough to get inside in time. The rose petal shower symbolizes the Holy Spirit’s descent to Earth. Arrive early to secure your spot.
Ennio Morricone – Saturday 15 to Sunday 23
After over 60 years dominating Italy’s contemporary classical music scene, celebrated composer Ennio Morricone is saying goodbye with a final concert at the Baths of Caracalla. Over the decades, Morricone has composed over 400 scores for cinema and television, as well as over 100 classical works. The 90-year-old Italian composer, conductor, orchestrator, and former trumpet player will conduct his music in concert for the last time. Don’t miss this chance to see a legend! Purchase tickets at enniomorricone.org.
Rome Chamber Music Festival – Sunday 16 to Monday 17
This highly anticipated festival celebrates its 16th birthday in Palazzo Barberini’s grand salon with a program performed
by both young talent and established names from around the globe. Allow the sun to shine down from Pietro da Cortona’s famous ceiling fresco as you take in Aaron Copeland’s Appalachian Spring. String suites by Tchaikovsky and Mendelssohn are also on the program. Open rehearsals from Wednesday the 12th. romechamberfestival.org
David LaChappelle – until Tuesday 18
Galleria Mucciaccia celebrates one of the most notable and controversial artists of our time, American photographer David LaChapelle, in a presentation of his works. The exhibition includes 34 pieces that encompass the entirety of the artist’s career so far, starting with his early works of the 1980s, and continuing through his most recent photographs. Capturing tropical atmospheres, landscapes, mythological figures, Hollywood portraits, and more sensitive subjects, LaChapelle’s works are both mystical and evocative and can be found in museums across the world, from New York to London to Tel Aviv. Largo della Fontanella di Borghese, 89. galleriamucciaccia.com.
Gary Clark Jr. – Tuesday 25
Grammy-winning American guitarist Gary Clark Jr. returns to Italy to perform tracks off his fifth album, This Land. The 34-year-old blues rocker has played alongside various rock-and-roll legends and has been praised by former US president Barack Obama for being the future of music. His latest album demonstrates the many stylistic variations in his command, including genres ranging from blues and jazz to soul and country. You can purchase tickets and find more information at auditorium.com.