December 14, 2017

Christmas Cribs, Markets and Gospel in Rome

Nativity scene

The 42nd edition of 100 Presepi, the international nativity crib exhibition, takes place at Sala del Bramante in Piazza del Popolo and can be visited daily from 10.00-20.00, including Christmas Day, until January 7. Each year 100 Presepi hosts some 150 nativity scenes from Italy and more than 40 other countries. In addition to contemporary reproductions of traditional 18th-century Neapolitan and Sicilian cribs, and 19th-century Roman mangers, there are modern versions made from wood, papier-mâché and terracotta, as well as unconventional materials such as sand, rice, pasta, nuts and bolts.

The classic Christmas Market in Piazza Navona has at its center the figure of the Befana. In Italian folklore, Befana is an old woman who delivers gifts to children throughout Italy on Epiphany Eve (the night of January 5) in a similar way to St Nicholas or Santa Claus. In the market, you will find statues and images of this popular figure and his unfailing stockings filled candy or “black coal” (sweet coal). But in market stalls do not miss crafts, toys, Christmas decorations, nativity figures, roasted chestnuts, candy floss. It can be visited daily until January 6.

Each year one of the most important international festivals features a selection of the best groups of spiritual and gospel from United States of America. Roma Gospel Festival, that starts on December 21 and will last ten days, outlines the latest joyful spirituality well-established throughout the world musical genre. Directed by Mario Ciampà, the festival now in its 22nd edition has become at Auditorium Parco della Musica’s standing appointment for all those who are passionate about this unique spiritual and musical expression.

Image: Nativity scene / Freepik

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