Our Florentine friends are up in arms at the arrival in their city of a new festival, sponsored by the Mayor Matteo Renzi with half a million Euros in grants and guarantees at a time when all Italians are being told to tighten their belts.
The festival is a private event owned by the IMG Artists co-owner Barrett Wissmann, who has confessed to fraud in the state of New York and has been back-seated ever since by the classical music industry.
How Wissmann has conned Florence to pay for his vanity festival we may never know. But while Wissmann pockets the cash, the important art exhibitor Fondazione Strozzi has taken a cut of 300.0000 and the Amici della Musica, the most prestigious chamber music presenter of Italy, 200.000.
Bring back the Borgias, all is forgiven.
Here’s La Repubblica and more…
UPDATE: I’ve modified the headline, on reflection, on the grounds that Wissmann’s fraud was not connected to classical music.