U.S. Cooking and Lecture Tour / U.S. Lectures




Lectures

Fascinated by the Italians? How they live today and how they (and we!) once lived the rural life? Eager to know more about their festivities and celebrations? Wish to learn to communicate with them (it’s all in the hands!)?

These and any of my other lectures will highlight the trip of any Italy tour groups. And if you’re not traveling to Italy this year, you can catch my lectures during my annual February/March U.S. Cooking/Lecture Tour! Increasingly popular: inspiring talks on Italy and the Italians for schoolchildren, grades K-12.

Lecturing in the U.S.

I lecture annually in the U.S. during my February/March coast-to-coast tour, which also includes cooking classes of Umbrian rural cuisine in private homes. Please see U.S. Events page for details on my annual U.S. tour.

U.S. Lecture Venues

In the U.S., venues have included: universities, museums, bookstores, Italian cultural organizations, corporations, arts’ associations, women’s organizations, Rotaries, book clubs, cultural/educational associations of every sort and even private homes. Frequently my lectures have been used as fund-raisers. Increasingly popular are my talks on Italy and the Italians in schools, enthusing and inspiring children in grades K-12.

U.S. Lecture Fees

For lectures in the U.S. and Canada (during my annual tour, February/March): $690 lecture honorarium plus $190 contribution to my travel.

Lectures can be arranged at any time during the year (and please contact me for honarium/travel expenses details for private bookings at other times).

Most Popular Lectures

All lectures are accompanied by a PowerPoint illustrated presentation. Lectures last about an hour and animated question/answer sessions can follow!

Italians, HANDS ON! – a perceptive and entertaining (it’s all in the hands!) talk on today’s Italians.
Folklore and Festivals in Umbria – a splendid panorama of Umbria’s magnificent medieval hilltowns and their astounding festivals.
Memoirs of Rural Life in Umbria – the story of our rural life in the early 1970’s and a tribute to our farm neighbors, who taught us everything about the land – and about life.

CLICK HERE for a short article on one of my lectures.

Other Lectures

Assisi: Before and After the Earthquake
Rural Life and Architecture in Umbria
The Italian Woman: From the Etruscans to the Present
Umbria, Inside Out

My Lecturing Started with an Earthquake

February, 1998 was the start of my annual U.S. lecture tours, motivated by the earthquake which struck Assisi in September, 1997 causing serious damage to the Basilica di San Francesco and, as a direct result, drastic loss of tourism here in Umbria. Unfortunately, news reports abroad misrepresented the extent of the damage: a tragedy for the populace as Italy’s main industry is tourism. So… I set off for the States to try to set the record straight.

The decision to "go was made in December of 1997, thanks to the encouragement of four Elderhostel couples (I was then the site co-ordinator of the Assisi Elderhostel programs) – on the East Coast, in the Midwest, on the West Coast – who encouraged me to come to the U.S. to "tell the story". They scouted lecture venues while I prepared slides and my talk. Alitalia and the consortium of hoteliers here in Assisi financed all travel.

Result: I left for the States in late January, 1998, ready to lecture at 26 venues, among them Trinity College (Hartford, CT), Vassar College, Smith College, New Haven Arts Council, American University, University of Texas-Austin, University of Southern California, Portland Fine Arts Museum, Loyola University (Chicago), Elvejium Museum (Madison, WI), Museo Italo-Americano (San Francisco, CA).

My first “earthquake tour” has led to many more: I’ve been returning to the U.S. annually in February and March ever since to lecture. In November, 1999 I was also asked to teach a cooking class of Umbrian rural cuisine (like the ones I teach here in our Assisi home) and so now my annual tours are a nice mix of lectures in some places, cooking classes in others. (Please also see US EVENTS and COOKING page).

Lecture Praise

Dr. Michael Campo, founder of the Italy Elderhostel Programs, is probably the best person to introduce me as a lecturer:
"Anne Robichaud is an exceptionally gifted and well-informed lecturer, as well as guide, coordinator and tour leader. Take your choice: in each of these capacities she is stellar. Her conducted walks and talks through Umbria and central Italy are unforgettable whether dealing with art, historical monuments and culture or folklore, local customs and the vernacular architecture of farmhouses and medieval dovecote towers. She possesses a bottomless store of informational anecdotes about past and everyday life in Italy deriving from her long residence in Assisi (where she is somewhat of a legend) as wife of an Italian husband and mother of three bright and charming children. If she hasn’t scheduled her demonstration of Italian body language, get her to do so; she is a wonderfully funny mimic as well as a highly professional scholar. She is both intellectually stimulating and warm and friendly. Under her expert leadership your experience will be memorable."
Dr. Michael R.Campo, founder and former director of Trinity College’s Elderhostel Programs in Italy and John J. McCook Professor (Emeritus) of Modern Languages and Literature at TrinityCollege, CT

“At a prestigious art gallery in Kathmandu, the U.S. Embassy helped arrange Anne to give one of her famous talks about the culture and mores of Italy. It was a great success, one that had the audience talking about it for weeks. The lecture was one of the cross cultural exchanges of the year, as Anne educated and charmed a most diverse audience of international artists, diplomats, development workers, Nepalese government and cultural leaders, and tourists from around the world. She got through to them all.”
Michael E. Malinowski, Ambassador, U.S. Department of State Chair

Lecturing to the Young Presidents’ Organization proved to be challenging and exciting:
"Our members very much enjoyed your presentation, ‘Implications of Being Italian: Gestures’, and found your ideas to be thought-provoking. They gave your presentations an excellent rating of 9.0 overall which is very high by Young Presdents’ Organization standards, and especially for a first time presentation at a University (this is a tough audience!)."
Laurie Cruciger, University Education Manager, Young Presidents’ Organization, Irving, TX

“Loved your presentation at the Les Dames d’Escoffier event in Seattle! Using pictures of people you know and teaching us to do hand gestures was a brilliant way to portray Italian culture. Grazie mille!”
Martha M, Seattle, WA

"Anne, just loved the ‘gestures’ lecture and Power-point show. It was a great combo of humor and passion and the beauty of Umbria."
Nancy Mazza, San Francisco, CA

"You made us feel like we were almost in Italy. We can’t wait to go back and now we’ll be much more observant of the local people. Thank you – and please come back next year!"
Linda and Lou Golina, San Francisco, CA

Agenzia Viaggi Stoppini in Assisi handles all technical support for my guided visits (bus transportation, organization of meals, etc)