My awesome project is, VIVA VERDI! A 90-minute documentary currently in development. VIVA VERDI! Giuseppe Verdi, the most influential Italian opera composer of the nineteenth century – La Traviata, Aida, Falstaff, Rigoletto – willed his vast fortune to creating a retirement home for aging musicians and artists. Because of his extraordinary generosity and strong belief in the necessity of a dignified, musical retirement home for musicians, over a thousand living legends have called Casa Verdi home since its opening in 1902. Once gracing the great opera stages of the world including La Scala, The Royal Opera House and The Metropolitan Opera, Casa Verdi’s “guests,” who range in age from 77 to 103, are comprised of international opera singers, ballet dancers, musicians, conductors and composers now living out the third act of their lives with passion, dignity and purpose. Saturated with music and painted with lush cinematography, VIVA VERDI! will give viewers a glimpse of the celebrated and historic careers of these residents, currently living within the walls of Casa Verdi, and share the inspiring realities of their vibrant day-to-day lives as they continue to compose, dance, play, and mentor the newest “guests” – young music students from around the world who also call Casa Verdi home. VIVA VERDI! reveals how Verdi’s vision is not only alive and well today, but thriving – a life-affirming reminder of how music moves us at a fundamental level, and how nurturing artistic expression can create an ageless joy.
Funded by Awesome Without Borders (November 2014)