L’Aquila is the capital city of the Abruzzo region, located 714 metres above sea level on the Aterno River. The Abruzzo region is located in south-central Italy, bordered on the east by the Adriatic Sea and rising in the west into the Abruzzo mountains. This region is where the majority of the early Italian immigrants to Tasmania originated.
Given the significant hardship suffered by L’Aquila over the past decade from earthquake damage, it has not been possible for a delegation to travel to Hobart to celebrate the 20th anniversary of this sister city relationship. The City of Hobart marked this occasion by holding a reception in the Town Hall Ballroom in October in conjunction with the Abruzzese Association of Hobart.
The City also sent a small delegation to L’Aquila in May 2017 to mark the anniversary and show respect to the city following the unfortunate events it has endured.
The City of Hobart worked in collaboration with the local Abruzzese Association and the Australian Italian Club to implement two key fundraising events following a devastating earthquake in Abruzzo in 2009. A total of $60 000 was sent to the Mayor of L’Aquila, which contributed to the restoration of the L’Aquila University.
Smaller earthquakes also took place in August 2016 and January 2017. Following the 2016 earthquake, the Council provided $20 000 in financial support.
A ceramics exhibition, Surface: Beneath and Beyond, travelled with the City of Hobart delegation to L’Aquila in 2005.
A cappella choir
In 2005, 41 members of the L’Aquila A Cappella Choir (Coro Aquilano) travelled to Hobart. Free public concerts were held in the Hobart Town Hall and the Salamanca Arts Centre courtyard.