||Statua di Giacomo Puccini
Giacomo Puccini is Lucchese, or rather from "inside Lucca"
having been born within this city's walls, in Via di Poggio, a
centrally located street near beautiful Piazza San Michele.
The house where he was currently houses a museum dedicated to
the great musician. Every year thousands of his fans from all
over the globe make the journey to this museum.
A bronze statue of the musician was recently installed in front
of the museum.
Following his initial experience as a composer-he is remembered
for a famous motet he composed for the feast of the patron saint
San Paolino - Puccini left Lucca for Milan, where he took lessons
from Bazzini and Ponchielli and was soon ready for his opera debut
at "Villi" which opened the doors of Casa Ricordi and would be
the springboard for his prosperous career.
From this it would be possible to conclude that he grew away from
Lucca, particularly since his personal life lead him to find asylum
in Torre del Lago where he created his immortal operas.
But even in exile, Giacomo had a warm spot in his heart for Lucca,
land of his ancestors, young man's dreams and love stories.
He was known to go from Torre del Lago to Lucca to visit his friends,
and meet them in Caffè Caselli. On September afternoons, particularly
Sundays, he could be founded sitting at an outdoor table in "La
Stella Polare" cafè.
Puccini always had Lucca in his heart, and honored his city with
his musical genius. Lucca is famous for its walls, churches, chalk
statues, silk and its emigrants, but it is best known for the
name of Puccini.
On the occasion of Puccini's death, Filippo Sacchi wrote in Corriere
della Sera, "There are many countries where we do not see our
flag, but we can find Puccini everywhere.
In overseas orchestras, suburban barrel organs, phonographs in
villas, emigrants' barrel organs, in hotels, famous theatres,
in movies and in concert halls".
And with Puccini we find Lucca, his city that he always loved.