Balagan Café Dreams of Florence in the Synagogue Garden

Balagan Cafe

BALAGAN CAFE. July 11 & 18, September 5 & 22. Free entrance. Synagogue of Florence, Via Luigi Farini 4. The Synagogue will opens its doors for each event at 7 pm, and at 7:30 pm €10 aperitivos are served. More information on the facebook page and website.

Back for the seventh time, the program of this year’s Balagan Cafe consists of four evenings in the courtyard of the stunning historic Synagogue of Florence, with the presence of chefs, musicians, and guest speakers. 

2019’s theme is dreams, but not in exclusively the most literal sense of the word. The initiative has had a history of facilitating dialogue around the topic of what a more just and peaceful society would look like, and hence, our dreams of that aspiration. This topic ties into the religious aspect of the series as well, though. In Judaism, dreams have traditionally represented contact and communication with higher powers. The theme encompasses both the powerful phenomenon of the unconscious on an individual scale, as well as the power of hope within communities. 

On July 11, author Laura Forti will present her book entitled L’Acrobata, a story involving an entire century and multiple continents. This will be followed by a performance by multicultural singer Lee Colbert, an artist that incorporates Yiddish and English into tango style songs. She will be accompanied by pianist Paolo Cintio. 

On July 18 the Synagogue will see the convergence between two groups: the Jewish population of Florence and a few young members from the Roma community of Florence and Prato. Luca Bravi of the University of Florence will facilitate conversation between them. Topics that are frequently dismissed as too challenging will be brought to the forefront in hopes of enabling a valuable dialogue: Integration, freedom, residency, and of course, broken dreams and dreams still intact. The night will end with a concert by La Van Guardia, an animated band.

September 5 & 22 will involve a concert by Klezmerata Fiorentina, and the celebration of the European Day of Hebrew Culture. For more information, contact, 055 2346654, or 055 2466089. (emma hempstead)