A Slice of Sardinia with Kate Bolton-Porciatti

A Slice of Sardinia with Kate Bolton-Porciatti


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Sardinia is justly celebrated for its seascapes in myriad shades of blue, its red-rock coasts, and golden sand beaches. Yet this hauntingly beautiful island (the second largest in the Mediterranean) offers the visitor so much more: millennia of history, breathtakingly varied scenery, and eclectic cultural traditions thanks to its geographic position - “lost between Europe and Africa, and belonging to nowhere” (wrote DH Lawrence). Sardinia also brags one of the few Blue Zones in the world, noted for the exceptional longevity of its people; it’s a veritable Shangri-La.

In this seminar and virtual tour (partly recorded on location), guide and cultural historian Kate Bolton-Porciatti journeys from the island’s rocky north coast to its remote heart, where archaeological remains of mysterious tower-fortresses called ‘nuraghe’, ancient tombs and villages attest to an advanced indigenous civilization since at least 1800 BC. We explore the high plateau of the Giara - a hinterland where wild horses roam free – and the voluptuous volcanic landscape of the Marmilla region where man and nature live in perfect symbiosis. We sample local culinary and cultural traditions, discuss Sardinian secrets for eternal youth, and listen to the mesmerizing ‘cantu a tenòre’ - a music so ancient it is protected by Unesco.

Led by an expert on Italian culture and music, Kate Bolton-Porciatti, this interactive seminar is an ode to Sardinia. Designed to inform curiosity as well as future travels, participants will come away with an increased understanding of the landscapes, legends, and cultural traditions of this ravishingly beautiful Italian island.

Kate Bolton-Porciatti is a professor of Italian cultural history and music at the Istituto Lorenzo de’Medici and at the British Institute in Florence. She has published extensively as an academic, a critic, and a journalist, and is a regular contributor to BBC Music and The Daily Telegraph. From 1989, for 17 years, she was a producer and broadcaster for BBC Arts & Classical Music in London. She did her MPhil thesis in Italy, exploring the musical and cultural landscape of 15th-century Florence.

This conversation is suitable for all ages

90 minutes, including a 30 minute Q&A.

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