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Maestro Zeffirelli Memorial


Maestro Zeffirelli Memorial

A memorial for Franco Zeffirelli, the great Florentine director who died in June 2019, was held at the Embassy of Italy in London at an evening commemoration on Sunday 16 February 2020. The event was a star-studded parade of actors, producers, collaborators and lifelong friends of the late director, including Dame Maggie Smith (Tea With Mussolini), Jeremy Irons (Callas Forever; Hamlet), Robert Powell (Jesus of Nazareth), Leonard Whiting (Romeo and Juliet), Sir Ian McKellen (Much Ado About Nothing), producers Joe Volpe and Richard Goodwin, theatre critic Masolino D'Amico, and costume and set designer Raimonda Gaetani, as well as Pippo Corsi Zeffirelli, the vice-president of the foundation created by Zeffirelli.

Zeffirelli had a close bond with the UK, particularly London, and this had a marked influence on his artistic and personal life. He spoke often of his love for British culture and acknowledged that the theatre productions in Covent Garden in the late 1950s and early 1960s were key to his professional success.

The memorial is part of the series of events organised by the embassy in 2020 promoting Italian culture and Italian talent in the visual arts in what would become a very challenging year of revised cultural plans.

- Italian tv report on the event

- Article on La Nazione