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Ambassador Armando Varricchio attended the concert in commemoration of the 75th anniversary of the Fosse Ardeatine massacre performed by the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Maestro Riccardo Muti

Washington DC, February 22, 2019 – The Ambassador of Italy to the US, Armando Varricchio, traveled to Chicago yesterday to attend the premiere of the concert for the commemoration of the 75th anniversary of the Fosse Ardeatine, performed by the Chicago Symphony Orchestra and conducted by Maestro Riccardo Muti. Muti conducted Symphony N. 9 by US composer and Pulitzer Prize winner William Howard Schuman, entitled “Le Fosse Ardeatine”, followed by Mozart’s “Requiem”. The same concert will be performed on February 22 and 23.

The concert was organized alongside two other initiatives by the Chicago Symphony Orchestra in collaboration with the Italian Consulate General and the Italian Cultural Institute in Chicago. In particular, a pre-concert debate concerning the Fosse Ardeatine, moderated by Federico Rampini, US correspondent of the Italian newspaper “La Repubblica”, with the participation of Anthony L. Cardoza, Professor of History at Loyola University. The debate, held yesterday, was opened by a speech by Ambassador Varricchio. “The massacre of the Fosse Ardeatine: chronicle, history and memory”, a photographic exhibition curated by the Department of History, Cultural Heritage, Education and Society of the University of Rome “Tor Vergata” opened on February 18th at the Chicago Symphony Center. The exhibition is organized in collaboration with the Historical Museum of the Liberation and the Historical Office of the Police.

The concerts of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra and the initiatives related to the commemoration of the 75th anniversary of the Fosse Ardeatine massacre were acknowledged by the President of the Italian Republic, Sergio Mattarella. The President sent a message extending his gratitude to Maestro Riccardo Muti and to all the musicians of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, stating that “it is an evocative choice full of meaning [that of playing Schuman’s Symphony N. 9]. It pays tribute to the memory of the victims of that horrible act of terror, while honoring the personal and artistic memory of a composer of exceptional musical and human sensitivity.”

“We must ensure that these terrible and tragic crimes are not forgotten. We cannot be silent. The moving symphony by William Schuman, directed by Maestro Muti, the historical debate, and the photographic exhibition are initiatives that we support to recall that tragedy, and to preserve and strengthen, as a society, its memory for future generations,” said Ambassador Varricchio.