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The history

Every year in February the most important names of pop music meet in Sanremo for the Italian Song Festival.

In the setting of the Ariston Theater in the center of Sanremo since 1951, one of the most famous singing events of all time has been taking place, a tribute to Italian music and an Eurovision event. For six days, a competition that entertains millions of viewers who follow the elimination phases that lead to victory the most beautiful unpublished song of the year. Two sections in the competition: big and young proposals to win the prize.

A real mirror of Italian society that see itself through songs. If in the post-war period, songs like Grazie dei fioriand Vola colomba – with which Nilla Pizzi won the first two editions in ’51 and ’52 – were the image of Italy that was rising Non ho l’età by Gigliola Cinquetti ( 1964) or Zingara (1969) by Iva Zanicchi, described a country that had learned to enjoy life again. With Chi non lavora non fa l’amore, Adriano Celentano, in 1971, told of the economic boom. While Vita spericolata (1983) by Vasco Rossi or Donne (1985) by Zucchero – two songs that did not shine at the Festival – returned the most vivid image of the 80s.

The editions of the Festival until 1954 were broadcast only by radio, but soon the event turned into a television event broadcast on Eurovision by Rai Uno. The relationship between the event and Italian television is particular and symbiotic: the editions conducted by Pippo Baudo (thirteen) or Mike Bongiorno (eleven) have become memorable. Just as international guests, celebrities, and everything that for a week animates Sanremo and Italian television are memorable. This year the Sanremo Festival turns 70 and Rai1 celebrates this birthday together with Amadeus, artistic director and conductor of the Italian Song Festival and the five first evenings from the Ariston Theater, live from 4 to 8 February 2020.