Celebrating a Local Hero at Festa of Circo Principessa 2024

The Festival of Circo Principessa held annually, honors the Torpignattara hero, Ciro Principessa, who stood against fascism. On April 19, 1979, Principessa was murdered by fascists on the opening day of a local library. Forty-five years later, his impact is celebrated every year. 

This year’s festival took place on a lively Saturday in June in the colorful Villa Certosa neighborhood known for its murals, community involvement, and vibrant nightlife.  Upon arrival, I was greeted by the performance of Claudio Montuori, also known as l’uomo Uccello (The Bird Man). Children danced to his lively beat while friends socialized, all against the memorable backdrop of the mural of Ciro Principessa.

Various booths lined Largo dei Savorgnan, inviting everyone to learn more about self-determination, the theme of the Ciro Principessa Festival. Local artists, community groups, and performers also added to the festive ambiance. Nearby restaurants provided food as people enjoyed the festival late into the night. 

The overall atmosphere was cheerful and with a strong sense of community unity. The festival not only honored Ciro Principessa’s memory and his stand for self-determination but also highlighted the vibrant spirit of this Torpignattara neighborhood. 

Jinamai Joseph is currently interning at Universita Popolare Di Torpignattara for the summer of 2024 through Living and Learning International Southeastern University.

Read her blog here.