Italian Food Festival Now Open at the Taj Sheba [Archives:1999/48/Last Page]

November 29 1999

“To add impetus to Yemeni-Italian friendship, and to show what Italian traditions look like,” said Mino Remoli, Maestro of the L’Alba Mediterranean Group. “We are again and for the second time here in Yemen, namely at the Taj Sheba Hotel,” he continued.
The group of Italian chefs, musicians and actors have been performing at the Taj Sheba Hotel since Saturday. They will continue their elegant performance until Tuesday, November 30th before leaving for Aden to hold the same show at the Elephant Bay Beach Resort.
The show is divided into three parts. The first part is devoted to Neapolitan culture and songs. In the second part the cuisine of four different regions; Emilia Romansa, Toscana, Lazio and Sicilia will be served. While they are served, the musical band will play pieces of music of the same region whose cuisine is being served. In the third part, Italian popular folk songs are sung with an open invitation for guests to dance to them.
The Italian group is showing their dissatisfaction with what modernism has brought to being. They have realized the real meaning of the past, the ancient traditions of old Italy which no longer exist. “We don’t like the life of modernism,” they said, “there are many differences between Italy half a century ago and Italy today. About half a century ago, Italy was a poor country and food was very simple, but the age of industrialism has killed the simple way of life and imposed the life of ‘Macdonalds’ all over the world. Italy today, embraces a new life full of culture and riches but its soul is poor when it replaces its own rich culture with that of the Anglo-Saxon and Protestants which are a world of difference from our own culture and traditions. We don’t love the modernized life because we have our own great traditions.”
On the subject of Italian folk songs, the most popular one that represents the Mediterranean tradition is “‘O Sole Mio” (oh my son). “It is an invocation to God of the poor, nature, the wind, the sun, the sky, etc.,” said director, Gennaro Colangelo. Regarding food, the most popular meal that stands out in all the world is pizza.
During the show some sketches portray the traditional life of simple ancient people of Italy. In other words, they represent the identity of the real Italy.
By: Hisham Al-Qubati,
Yemen Times