Hot Dates July 2019

by Danilo Brunetti

July Roman summer hits top gear in July with outdoor music and theater festivals, special art exhibits,

Roma Summer Fest  – All Month

Rome’s premier performing arts venue, Auditorium Parco della Musica, is hosting a concert almost every night this month as part of their annual summer music series. Open to the stars, the Cavea amphitheater will see world-class bands like 30 Seconds to Mars (pictured right) and legendary solo artists such as Diana Krall and Ben Harper. Find out more about who will be performing on the site. Tickets available at

Rino Barillari – All Month

Seventy-six years of age, 44 years of career, more than 1600 hospitalizations, 11 broken ribs, a stab wound, 76 broken cameras, and 40 smashed flashes: these are the numbers of the world’s most famous paparazzo, Rino Barillari. Fondly known as the “King of the Paparazzi,” Barillari was a first-hand witness of Rome’s Dolce Vita years, and many other memorable epochs. A new exhibit at McArthurGlen Castel Romano Designer Outlet, Rino Barillari: 40 Shots of My Dolce Vita, is dedicated to the great photographer and runs all summer long. The exhibit displays a nostalgic selection from Barillari’s bottomless archive, black-and-white photos that immortalize stars like Frank Sinatra, divas like Anna Magnani, variety show protagonists like Raffaella Carrà, and crowned heads like Grace Kelly.

Via Ponte di Piscina Cupa, 64. Tel 065050050.

Silvano Toti Globe Theater  – All Month

A little piece of old-time London in Villa Borghese Park becomes one of Rome’s hottest summer destinations. Come for Italian-language performances of Shakespeare’s classic plays in this reconstruction of the bard’s original venue. The cheapest tickets in the house are surprisingly right by the stage. The catch: there are no seats in this area, or roof over your head. The audience stands or sits close together, reproducing the high-energy atmosphere of Shakespeare’s Elizabethan-era performances.

Fireworks Contest at Cinecittà World  – from Friday 5 to Sunday 7

Rome is burning! In 2014, the renowned Cinecittà Studios, responsible for legendary films such as La Dolce Vita and Ben Hur, expanded their operations to include a spectacular amusement park. Spend the afternoon splashing between crumbling aqueducts in an ancient-style warship or corkscrewing around an outer space-themed rollercoaster, before experiencing this year’s national fireworks championships. Twelve experienced pyrotechnic teams from across Italy will put on their colorful displays, and you can help pick the winner through an online vote. General admission ticket includes the show.

Ludika 1243 Medieval Festival  – from Wednesday 10 to Sunday 14

Travel north to Viterbo and back in time to the height of the city’s medieval glory. Ludika 1243’s name refers to the date of a proud moment in viterbese history, when residents held off a siege led by Holy Roman Emperor Frederick II. An exuberant reenactment of this battle caps off a five-day weekend of authentic 13th-century games, costumes, performances, eating, and drinking in the famed San Pellegrino medieval quarter.

The Vatican by Night  – Fridays

Every Friday this month, the Pope opens the doors of his extensive collections to art-loving night owls. The twilight fun lasts from 7 to 11pm, and for an extra €17 you can start your evening with an aperitivo in the marvelous Pinecone Courtyard, enjoying drinks, hors d’oeuvres, and views of St. Peter’s dome. Live orchestral and chamber music heighten the magic, both outdoors and inside the museum. Reserve your tickets in advance at

July’s Calendar