The Botanical Gardens are tucked into a corner of the city under the walls. It is not the first stop on the casual travellers agenda and indeed the gardens can be viewed clearly from the walls. The Lucchesi children will tell you that on a stormy night the face of Lucida Mansi, a 17th century noblewoman from the city, who made a pact with the devil to preserve her beauty, as Botox hadn’t been invented yet, can be seen in the pond.
Last Friday, however was a beautiful warm evening and the gardens opened their gates to host a concert together with an art show. These Friday evenings have become a regular summer feature in Lucca allowing this often neglected corner of the city to come to life with the sound of music amongst the trees.
We were treated to a recital of arias from Bizet to of course the cities most famous son Puccini. Alessandra Rossi Trusendi, Soprano, and Arianna Lorenzi, mezzo, accompanied on the piano by Angela Baroncelli, performed inside the large glass house with the huge sliding doors opening onto the balmy evening. The paths leading to the venue and connecting it to the grotto were the art show was held, were lit with candles and some of the trees floodlit creating a truly shamanic atmosphere.
Free Concerts held everyday Friday evening throughout July and August at 9.30pm in the Botanical Gardens.