Like every other devoted Spoletian, we crammed in front of City Hall this afternoon for the festival’s Opening Ceremonies. Things kicked off with a prayer (reminding us that we are, indeed, in the Holy City), and Flora’s Robert McPherson (Hob) sang the National Anthem. Beautifully, of course.
Michael Colgan, director of Dublin’s Gate Theatre, charmed us with his Irish accent as he spoke of the special rapport the company has with our city, and he thanked Mayor Riley for keeping the artists in mind during the Dock Street renovations. “All of the artists at this festival believe you’ve got your priorities right,” he said. Riley then spoke about the renovations, hinting at a similar future for the Gaillard Auditorium, before giving his signature welcome: “And, now, Maestro, let the music begin, the dancers dance, the choirs sing, the children play, the banners fly and the confetti fall! I hereby declare the 34th Spoleto Festival U.S.A. has begun!”