To commemorate the 750th anniversary of Dante’s birth, Trinity’s Italian department, UCD and UCC have been organising readings of Dante’s Divine comedy in conjunction with Instituto di Cultura Italiano.
This afternoon from 2.30pm in Trinity’s Chapel in Front Square, they will be presenting the final third of Dante’s Divine Comedy, Paradiso. Following the previously praised readings of Inferno at the National Gallery and Purgatorio at the Glucksman Gallery in Cork, Paradiso will conclude our journey from Hell to Heaven in Trinity’s Chapel. There will be readings in 9 languages including Czech, Hungarian and Finnish, although the majority of the cantos will be through Italian. These readings will be backed by presentations with Dante’s original text as well as a selection of quotes in English. Artist Monika Beisner has given her permission for her illustrations to accompany each canto. Lithographs by Liam Ó Broin will also be exhibited in the vestibule to the Chapel.
Speaking to The University Times, Prof Corinna Salvadori Lonergan, assured that all of the readers are incredibly captivating and were selected based on how well they speak and can read poetry. She also stated that one of the cantos would be sung. There are several notable speakers from likely candidates like Salvadori Lonergan herself to The Italian Ambassador to Ireland, Giovanni Adorni Braccesi and Senator Marie-Louise O’Donnell. I myself am most excited about listening to the 11th and 12th canto, where Thomas Aquinas, a Dominican Friar, praises the Franciscans, whilst Bonaventure the second founder of the Franciscans, commends the Dominicans. At the time these two orders were at each other’s throats, explained Salvadori Lonergan. She let me in on the secret that two Friars from these respective orders will be reading out the cantos.
This performance starts at 2:30pm and will last until 8pm. Admission is free, and if you have an hour or two to spare why not pop down to the Chapel between lectures as attendees are invited to come and go. If the first two thirds of this series are anything to go by, this isn’t something you want to miss.