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Italian Week, or "Settimana Italiana", is an Italian cultural festival which is held in the Australian city of Brisbane in May. Founded in 2007, Italian Week occurs annually between 26 May and 2 June across Queensland and features a series of events, shows, cultural activities and concerts.
Italian Week collaborations
Italian Week business and corporate partners include over the six years the Treasury Casino, Commonwealth Bank of Australia, Marriott Hotel, Sofitel Brisbane Central, Di Bella Coffee, Elio Moda, Vittoria Coffee and many more.
Cultural partners include the Accademia Italiana della Cucina, Newstead House, Brisbane Metropolitan Bands, Metropolitan South Institute of TAFE, the Gallery of Modern Art, Ciak Junior and more.
Italian Week 2007
Italian Week 2007, which was in collaboration between the Italian Government and the Queensland Government, aimed to portray a dynamic and modern Italy, paying special attention to the story of migration and to its contribution to the enrichment of Australian culture.
Italian Week 2008
In 2008, Italian Week chose to focus on literature, art, culture, culinary experiences, sport, fashion, music and the performing arts, education and language. Among the hosts of this edition there were many international musicians, fashion experts and industry leaders, capturing an impressive amount of media attention: from television to newspapers and magazines, from radio to online media. The context was ‘Italian Culture in the Modern Age’.
Reaching a significant Queensland audience via television created one of the media coverage highlights, when Italian Week featured on ‘The Great South East’ and airing across Queensland on 11 May. It featured Alessandro Sorbello, executive producer of Italian Week taking presenter Sofie Formica on a tour to discover the Italian side of the city. The interview included a visit to Sirianni’s, New Farm Park, Elio Moda, Dolci Sapori and an interview with Peter Cupples and his daughter Georgia.
Thanks to the collaboration with ANZ Bank, Italian Week was also promoted throughout Brisbane with Italian Week flyers displayed in all the ANZ branches. In 2010 and 2011 thanks to the collaboration with Commonwealth Bank the same initiative was extended to all the Queensland’s Commonwealth Bank branches. At this stage Social Media, in particular Facebook, started to be used to promote events and businesses. This choice allowed capturing the attention of a larger audience, breaking the location barrier and encouraging more interactivity with the users by reposting and adding their own photos and videos.
Italian Week 2009
The 2009 festival returned and the edition offered a program, which included new collaborations with Opera Queensland, Queensland Orchestra, Metropolitan South Institute of TAFE, and Treasury Casino.
Italian Week program featured events showcasing food & wine, art, literature, music, fashion, language, innovation and technology. Events included a feature concert in Reddacliff Place with international artists, the launch by the Ambassador of Italy H.E. Gian Ludovico de Martino di Montegiordano of Italian Fashion Week in the Queen Street Mall and other events.
Italian Week 2010
La Bella Figura became the central theme for Italian Week 2010 running through events spread out on a 10 days programme. La Bella Figura means "the beautiful figure" but is actually a way of life emphasizing beauty, a positive and self-image, aesthetics and graciousness.
A series of important collaborations began in 2010. Qantas provided an opportunity to extend marketing and promotions across the state. The Italian Week promotional film was shown on all inbound flights into Brisbane in May 2010, and in 2011 and 2012 all across Australia.
Celebrations extended to a wider area, reaching the Granite Belt region with a motor vehicle rally from Brisbane to Stanthorpe and others food and wine, and music events (including a concert with Australian artists Jon English and Peter Cupples).
Another significant cultural collaboration involved the launch of the Accademia Italiana della Cucina, one of the few internationally recognized cultural institutions of the Republic of Italy.
The launch featured International recording artists Patrizio Buanne, Lisa Hunt, Anna Maria la Spina, Natalie Gauci (winner of Australian Idol 2007) and, Veronica and Shadi Abraham (winners of My Kitchen Rules 2010) and many others guests.
Italian Week 2011
The event calendar for Italian Week 2011 was richer than all the previous years and played a special attention to Italian and Queensland actuality. For the first time, cities other than Brisbane such as Ipswich, Sunshine Coast, Cairns took part in the celebration showing a first attempt to export the festival involving other areas of Queensland and attaining a wider public in Australia. Events in Ipswich, Sunshine Coast and Cairns enriched the Brisbane program with more than 70 events counted from 20 May to 4 June.
The selected topic for 2011 was Dolce far Niente, that means “the sweetness of doing nothing”. This concept is the Italian awareness of enjoying one's leisure time dedicated your attention to the delicious idleness of life.
It has to be noted that Italian Week 2011 was not just a collection of events. The festival, which cannot be restricted to a single week, tries to promote long term initiatives, which may have a broader outcome.
Firstly, Italian Week is actively committed to the Hear and Say Centre; each edition aims (and manages) to raise funds to enable one born deaf child to enter the Hear and Say Centre rehabilitative program.
Additionally, Italian Week 2011 launched the Italian Club, which is addressed to all Italians and passionate for Italian community and culture. The Italian Club provides them with the opportunity to experience and enjoy events and special offers from participating businesses before, during and after the festival.
The theme for Italian Week 2012 was “Sapori and Piaceri”, which means “Tastes and Pleasures” and the highlight was once again the Illumination. In front of the Treasury Casino illuminated in green, white and red for the fourth year, the QPAC building provided a beautiful view of the Brisbane Southbank riverside. Once again, through the Illumination, Italian Week expressed its tribute to Italy and to Italian immigrants in Australia. Furthermore, the Illumination was also dedicated to the people who suffered the effects of the earthquake in Emilia Romagna.
Italian Week proposed a series of event in which Italian culture was showcased in Italian gastronomy with the special guest Stefano Manfredi, chef at the Italian Alfresco Feast at the Treasury Hotel; in music, with the young and talented Italian acoustic guitarist Andrea Valeri and the Italo-American guitarist Art Phillips; in cinema with the screening of Lezioni di Cioccolato in collaboration with the Dante Alighieri Society, Casa Italia Community Centre and Griffith University; in traditional dance with Carmen Gentile, young Italian dance from Salerno; in Italian manufacture with an exhibition of classic and modern Fiat Cars in collaboration with Fiat Car Club QLD, and an handmade bicycles display in collaboration with Lombardo Bikes; in food with a series of fundraising events related to Italian gastronomy such as the Pizza Masterclass in collaboration with Gourmet Italia, and the Taste of Italy Food Tasting in collaboration with Pennisi Cuisine Distributors.
The 2012 campaign maintained the promotional strategies used in the previous years, given their proven efficacy. Again the promotional objectives of Italian Week 2012 were achieved thanks to the ongoing collaboration with Sequel Communications, which secured media coverage across print, radio and TV in Queensland in the primary markets of Brisbane.
The media campaign managed to lift the profile of Italian Week, highlight the presence of the Italian culture in Queensland and encourage residents to attend the events throughout the week. Social photographers from Brisbane publications Brisbane News, City News and the Sunday Mail were invited to key events. Sequel coordinated a media call at the Treasury Casino on 23 May to coincide with the official start of the Italian Week program. The event was organised to provide local media with a variety of talent and vision opportunities.
For the third year, Qantas screened on its in-flight "What’s On Program" a 30-second promotional video of Italian Week in all the domestic flights within Australia from 15 May to 2 June. A promotional video was also screened in the heart of the City of Brisbane, on the maxi screens in the Queen Street Mall and in King George Square, augmenting the awareness of Italian Week.
According with the analysis made by YourConnenction in 2011 on the social network approach shown by Italian Week in the last few years, the communication strategy for the future will be focused on settling a powerful online communication, which will support and strengthen the off-line promotion campaign. Facebook in 2011 and 2012 was an important communication medium, reaching more than 1600 fans.
- Channel 7 - Great South East online - 24 May 2009
- Courier Mail - 28 May 2011
- Courier Mail - 25 May 2011
- Courier Mail front page - 26 May 2009
- B Mag - 24 May 2011
- Sunday Mail - 30 May 2010
- Quest News Online - 25 May 2009
- Brisbane News front page - May 2010
- Brisbane News - 19 - 25 May 2010
- La Fiamma - 8 July 2009
- La Fiamma - 17 May 2010
- La Fiamma - 27 May 2011
- Brisbane City Council - Budget 2012/13