Outside of the classroom, there are so many ways to experience Italian culture—from taking in local art and architecture to enjoying traditional foods and exploring cultural sites. When you want another way to fully immerse yourself in the culture, music can connect you to the city.
Musicians and their work influence fashion, make political statements, and provide a way for people to express their identities. When you hear a specific song, it can transport you back to another time and place. As you study in Italy, take a tour into its music scenes and gain insights into the culture through this important medium. Here is an introduction to get you started!
A Few Music Venues in Rome for the Study Abroad Student
When you study abroad, you will find that Rome hosts a large variety of musical acts at venues throughout the city. Whether you like jazz, heavy metal, or indie rock, you will be able to find live music to enjoy. If you want to see jazz, head to Casa del Jazz, which is part of a 1920’s villa.
If you prefer acoustic acts in an eclectic setting, find your way to Rione Monti and check out the unplugged shows at Blackmarket Hall in Monti. The bonus here is a kitchen that’s open late so you can also have a meal with live music after a day of studying.
The Summer Concerts Series
One small language difference to note about the music scene in Italy might be the use of the word “festival.” You might hear about Rock in Roma festival and think it will be like Coachella or Lollapalooza. However, a music festival in Italy, in this case, refers to a series of concerts, rather than jam-packed three or four-day schedule of musical acts.
If you study in Italy during the summer semester, you will have a chance to go to Rock in Roma and Roma Summer Fest. Rock in Roma 2020 will host American acts like Kendrick Lamar, but you can also go see Coez, an Italian rapper. Roma Summer Fest also hosts internationally touring artists like Woodkid and Caribou. While these festivals do not focus exclusively on Italian music, they may provide a way to meet Italians who are interested in music.
Italian Indie Acts
Italy has produced internationally successful artists like Alice Bisi, known as Birthh, who was recently featured on American airwaves via All Songs Considered, a public radio show. Her sound is comparable to the British indie folk act Daughter and even though she sings in English, this singer-songwriter is from Florence.
For indie rock that sounds a little inspired by 90’s grunge, there is Mèsa, whose album was released by a label called Bomba Dischi in 2019. Another highly recommended artist to follow is Ceri, a producer who works with popular Italian acts, including Coez, and makes his own dreamy music. Overall, Italy has a thriving independent music scene you can discover more fully once you are there—of course, you can also preview these artists online, too.
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