The Embassy of Italy in Tirana, in conjunction with the Albanian National Opera and Ballet, staged ‘Il Trovatore’, Giuseppe Verdi’s drama in four acts and the second opera of his so-called ‘trilogia popolare’. The production celebrates the 2019 EU Week and promotes the opera as a distinctive feature of Italian culture. “Wherever politics builds borders, great music unites us all. Verdi’s music united Italy, Europe and the whole world,” said the Italian Ambassador to Albania, Alberto Cutillo. The High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy and Vice-President of the European Commission, Federica Mogherini, attended the premiere of the opera, which also featured a cast of Italian artists. As a side event to the performance, the Italian Embassy promoted a project that was specifically designed and developed for the three classes of the Italian-Albanian bilingual section of the High School ‘Ismail Qemali’ in Tirana. The project, known as “An invitation to the opera”, included lectures, meetings and debates with experts as well as writing workshops. Students were asked to identify the connections between Verdi’s music and the Italian cultural and social context in the second half of the 19th century.They were also challenged to try their hand at writing reviews of theatrical performances and film some video interviews for Albanian media in the hope that this would contribute to making opera music more popular with young people.