Banfi vintners' Castello Banfi (also known as Castello Poggio alle Mura) at sunset
On the way to Castello Banfi - Montalcino

If you love Italian wine as much as classical music, with the the 2012 edition of the Melodia del Vino festival being in full swing, this is the time to cruise Southern Tuscany. All concerts of the second part of the festival will take place in the fabulous locations of some of Tuscany's most prestigious wineries in the provinces of Siena and Grosseto.

  • Tenuta Rocca di Frassinello, June 30: Sayaka Shoji (violin), Marc Laforet (piano). The Japanese violinist and Premio Paganini winner and  the French pianist will play works of Janacek, Beethoven, Debussy and Brahms at Rocca di Frassinello. The winery has been designed by Italian star architect Renzo Piano and sports a marvelous barricaia (a wine cellar dedicated to French barrique barrels only), which makes for a fantastic concert space. 
  • Tenuta Rocca di Montemassi, July 3: Laure Favre-Kahn (violin), Nemanja Radulovic (violin). The French and Serbian violinists will play compositions by Kreisler, Grieg, Franck and Saint-Saens. The beautiful Rocca di Montemassi estate is property of the Zonin family - one of Italy's most renown wine making families. 
  • Castello Poggio alle Mura, July 5: Alexander Kniazev (violoncello).  Banfi Vintners' medieval Castello Poggio alle Mura (also known as Castello Banfi) near Montalcino is the perfect concert venue for the performance of the famous Russian cellist, who will interpret works by Bach and Chaconne 
  • Petra Winery, July 7: Andrea Lucchesini (piano). The closing concert of the festival will take place at Suvereto's Petra Winery. The winery's stunning wine cellar was designed by Swiss architect Mario Botta, another big name of contemporary architecture. 

Pine tree, vineyard and Mario Botta's wine cellar at Petra Winery Suvereto
Petra Winery near Suvereto (by Swiss architect Mario Botta) 

Wine tastings start at 7pm. Concerts start a good hour and a half later to make sure you'll have plenty of time to get to know those fabulous Southern Tuscan wines. 
Tickets cost from 17€ to 30€ and can be booked via the festival's website (Melodia del Vino) or from 6.30pm onward at the concert location (wine tasting is included in the ticket price). The festival website also provides further background information on the performing musicians. 

Desperate, because you're not here yet? No worries, Tuscany will be home to many more noteworthy music festivals this summer: Music Festivals in Southern Tuscany Summer 2012.  

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