Sant’Agata’s small village is located in the municipality of Villanova sull’Arda, near the Northern border of the Piacenza Province, in the lowest part of the Padana Plain, which has the Po river and the Ongina small stream as natural borders, and it is crossed by the Arda river.
You can’t say you know Maestro Giuseppe Verdi if you have never visited the house where he lived for a long time and where he loved to stay after his long journeys, the stylish Villa where he composed his wonderful music, such as Trovatore, Traviata, La forza del destino, Don Carlos, Aida and his last masterpiece, Falstaff.
The best period for a visit to Sant’Agata is in spring, when the cherry trees are blooming and when the country all around, dotted with big farms and orchards (mostly cherry trees and apple trees), turns white and pink and is a spectacular sight.
But first of all, the town is well-known because of Villa Verdi, the property that the Maestro bought in 1848. Verdi himself drew the sketches and left written and detailed instructions about the choice of building materials and about the house enlargement project.
The composer moved there in the spring of 1851 with his second wife Giuseppina Strepponi, a famous opera singer. He lived and worked there, enjoying the isolation he needed to create his music. He was a reserved and shy person too. Villa Verdi still retains its original structure and furniture and it is still inhabited by his heirs, as Maestro Verdi wanted. Nowadays Villa Verdi represents the best key to comprehending the immortal spirit of his genius.
The most remarkable rooms, where Verdi lived with his wife, are full of personal belongings, piano scores and memories.
Sant’Agata, as well as its surroundings areas, is very well-known for the cherry cultivation. However, don’t miss delicious typical Piacenza dishes, that you can eat along The Po River Trail of Tastes that crosses Sant’Agata.
Sant’Agata belongs to the Luoghi Verdiani trail: Busseto, the small town where Maestro Verdi was born is just 3km away, in the Parma Province.
Nearby (5 km far from Sant’Agata) you can visit San Pietro in Cerro’s Castle, which houses on the third floor MIM, Museum In Motion, an important contemporary art collection created by the owner.