Good Luck to the New Directors; May they Continue the Work Undertaken and Carried out with the Same Commitment and Involvement as has been Achieved Thus Far.

By Antonio Manzi.

After about six years of being the President of the Cultural Association “Amici di Torricella" (Friends of Torricella), I am leaving this task due to the course of normal and correct turnover. It has been a wonderful experience for me, which I have lived with great love and passion, in the hopes of contributing to a harmonious cultural and social development of our village.

During these years we have achieved many exciting objectives. We have involved almost the entire populace of Torricella in the splendid, high-class international competitions for Lyric Voices that have been of Regional and National importance, being such great artistic events.

We have published the Newsletter periodically, by comparison (with other publications) a correct and articulate expression, illustrating traditions, usages, portraits of country life, providing useful news and giving people the chance to express their opinions about the social and economic development of the village. This initiative has been an unqualified success.

Communicating with people can be easy, the difficulty lies in doing it well and using moral principles; and our journal has succeeded, becoming established as one of the best publications in the Region. We have accomplished many activities of good quality, all connected with the development of our village.

From highly educational events carried out in conjunction with the “V. Bellini” Middle School, to the convention on the theme “A Project for the Development of Tourism in a Village in the Interior” in collaboration with the Town Council and “Abruzzo Verde” (“Green Abruzzo”); from Photographic Competitions with the theme of our locality, to Touring Exhibitions.

From Agri-Tourism days in collaboration with “Abruzzo Verde”, to the important ceremony on discovering the gravestone of the Torricellan ancestors of the D’Amicos - and then conferring honorary citizenship on Alexander, the son, and Filomena, the niece, of the great Silvio D’Amico[1]. From the award of the Medal I remember the Torricellan writer and journalist Antonio Piccone Stella, to the various numerous other events recalling village traditions. In carrying this ambitious programme forwards I have valued the close, indispensable collaboration of the Vice-President, Nicola D’Orazio, and all members of the Executive Committee, Antonio Piccoli, Bruno Gentile and Germana Piccone, to whom I renew my thanks and express my esteem. Our Association was born amidst the living and contradictory reality of our village and our zone. Our task was to do battle for a just solution to our problems. This battle must be continued with determination and good-will. The new President Aurelio Lalli Persiani has all the qualities necessary for carrying out this task. His sensitivity and his love for Torricella will form the basis of his work, his intelligence and his imagination will certainly lead him to consolidating and developing the successes already obtained. I offer him and his collaborators my most affectionate and sincere good wishes for good work.

Towards the Re-launch of our Association

By Antonio Piccoli.

It was three years ago that President Manzi went unheard when he asked for someone to replace him. He didn’t want to abandon us, but merely to pass on the job, to inject new life into the Association, and, above all, to comply with the statute that states that each year there should be a new President. But nothing happened: for three years when he handed in his resignation, each time he was asked to stay on for another year since no other member felt able to succeed him, to do what he had done, see the lyric competition, with his personality and his prestige.

Thus the lack of changeover, together with the lack of funds with which to organise the competition, took the Association into a long period of high level inactivity. On the other hand, for other reasons with certain solution, this Newsletter, a fundamental element necessary for the life of the Association, has not come out since January ’93 [nearly 2 years]; the lack of publication left one feeling confused.

On the 16th August at the ordinary summer assembly, the members wanted to resolve the problem in any way possible; as they say in Torricella, “o si tresca o si spicce l’ara”, “either it’s an affair or it’s a dash to the altar”, in other words, either we elect a President or we shut down. This latter possibility had been floating in the air for quite a while, but we had had the feeling that whoever pronounced it would be doing so in order to exorcize the closure itself.

Several members spontaneously had renewed their subscriptions, paying as much as 50,000 Lire (annual membership is only 30,000) trying to save the saveable. And many people at Torricella Peligna did not want it to close down, because they knew full well that in great part the reawakening of culture and tourism there was thanks to the Association’s activities. Finally, after hours of heated debate, since everyone wanted it to carry on, someone came forward who was willing to undertake the task, if only for one year. Aurelio Lalli Persiani and Rodolfo Taito, together with Bruno Gentile, Germana Piccone, and Antonio Piccoli, from the “old guard”, all agreed that it was time to put a halt to the stagnant situation and carry forward the experience of the Association. The very first things to be done were to publish the journal again, at least three times a year, and to send a letter to all the members inviting them to renew their membership cards. If these initial steps give the desired effect, then at the assembly on 30th December, the summer programme will be discussed in order to make decisions about it together and to set it in motion.

Translator's Note:

[1] Silvio D’Amico – (1887 – 1955) Theatre critic and founder of the Accademia di Arte Drammatica

© Amici di Torricella            No. 14   December 1994   page 2

Translation courtesy of Dr. Marion Apley Porreca

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