Italy's matera 2019 European capital of culture

Added On January 5, 2019

 The ancient Italian city of Matera is this year's European Capital of Culture.

An opening ceremony for the yearly event will be held on January 19th.
Matera is famous for its many ancient dwellings and churches dug out of hard rock.
The city was designated as the 2019 European Capital of Culture back in 2014 and is the second Italian city to receive the honor.
It plans to host more than 200 cultural events this year.
Soundbites (English): PAOLO VERRI, Fondazione Matera-Basilicata 2019
"The incredible success of the bid is due to three main goals. First, working about participation very hardly, the 10% of the population has been involved since six years ago in all the process. Second, having a very new idea about culture. The idea of a culture that we in Matera are proposing is not something that is top-down but is bottom-up, everybody has the opportunity to bring something to a common idea of culture. And third, we managed everything in time and with a small amount of money thanks to a lot of volunteers that shared their time with us, not only in place but also on the web."
To recast the city as a tourist site, Matera has redeveloped many of its culturally significant areas.
Considered one the purest city in Europe until 1952, today, Matera is a vibrant city that plays host to a complex network of caves, streets, and churches. Some of the city's caves have been transformed into incredible hotels and restaurants.
Andrea Cenisio is an artist who turned an ancient cave dwelling into a small museum. He says the upcoming event will bring out the best of the city.
Soundbites (Italian): ANDREA CENISIO, Artist
"Matera combines the remote past and the future, a future that will bring us comfort, I hope, and peace for everyone who visits Matera. This is my wish."