Dante Alighieri Society of Washington

per la diffusione della lingua e della cultura italiana nel mondo

Dante Bust

Your Door to All Things Italian

We Embrace All Who Enjoy All Things Italian and Desire To Expand Their Knowledge of a Beautiful Country, Its People and Its Language

The Dante Alighieri Society of Washington promotes the Italian language and culture and welcomes all who share those objectives. Each year we present English and Italian programs open to the public, and host the Christmas party and the Annual Wine Dinner featuring wines from throughout Italy. The Society also sponsors an Italian Language program with beginner to expert classes for everyone who wants to learn, improve or perfect their fluency in Italian.

Sign up for our email list here. You will receive news of upcoming events.

Information on becoming a Dante Society member is here.

News and Upcoming Events ...

  • The September 2019 La Voce is now available. Check up on the latest news and read about some recent travels of Dante Society members.
  • The 32nd Annual Festa Italiana at the Seattle Center takes place September 28 & 29.  Festa Italiana is free and celebrates the cultural roots of Italians and Italian-Americans in the Pacific Northwest by promoting the arts, the food and the culture that are uniquely Italian. Come visit the Dante Alighieri Society’s booth and take a quiz to test your knowledge of Italy’s regions. More information can be found at Festa Italiana’s website.
  • Our annual Festa di Natale per i Bambini will be held Saturday, December 7 from 1 pm to 4 pm. This year's celebration will be at St. Margaret of Scotland Catholic Church in the Interbay neighborhood of Seattle. More information is available here.
  • The Dante Alighieri Society's new home is St. Patrick's Catholic Church, 815 East Edgar Street, on the North side of Capitol Hill. Parking is available in St. Patrick's parking lot, off of E. Edgar street. The meetings take place in the Parish Hall, located in the basement of the church and is entered on the West side of the church, off the parking lot. Except for one or two meetings a year, this will be our new location.
Pasta Dish

Next English-language gathering:

Wed., Oct. 9, 2019, 6:30 pm
St. Patrick's Catholic Church

Rob Pruver
An Avant-Garde Italia: The Futurists, Modern Art and the Promise of the 20th Century

In 1909 the writer Filippo Tommaso Marinetti published his Futurist Manifesto, in which he denounced the oppressive weight of Italy’s past and advocated a program of radical artistic, social and technological innovation. Soon, painters, sculptors, writers and musicians joined Marinetti in a quest to re-fashion Italian culture and are known collectively as The Futurists. What are we to make of their whirlwind of artistic output? What impact did they have? How Italian was this movement of passionate Italians?

Rob Prufer is a long-time participant in Dante Alighieri Society of Washington activities, including serving several years as vice-president. He is an avid student of the Italian language and Italian art history. He shares his passion for art history with his students at Newport High School and the wider public in his lecture series at the Bellevue Arts Museum, The Loggia Lectures.

Next Italian-language gathering:

Wed. Sept. 25, 2019, 6:30 pm
St. Patrick's Catholic Church

Robert Thomson
Florence, Dante and Me

Robert Thomson from Victoria, Canada will be presenting his recently published book "Florence, Dante and Me." Thomson spent the 1960-61 year in Italy on a scholarship from the Italian government. During the year he
wrote many detailed letters to his fidanzata in Canada, telling her about Italian customs and habits, the Italian friends he made, the cities he visited, the operas he attended, his singing lessons, etc. Early in the year Thomson decided to speak Italian only for the whole year. This served him well throughout his life.

In 2017 he took the letters and photos and made them into a book. He will be reading passages from his book and showing some of the best photos.  To read passages and see some of the photos visit Thomson’s site: www.godwinbooks.com

Robert Thomson was born in Vancouver, B.C. in 1940. He fell in love with Italian in 1951 when he saw "The Great Caruso" starring Mario Lanza at his local movie theater. In 1962 he took his B.A. in French and Italian at the University of British Columbia then received his PhD from Yale in 1966.

Thomson had a long and varied career in teaching (e.g. The University of Toronto, The University of Illinois and various high schools). He took early retirement in 1995.

His main books are: "Italian for the Opera" (1990) and "Operatic Italian" (2009). Both books use extracts from operas to illustrate their language points; Thomson's main goal was to analyze them in detail to show the richness of Italian librettos. The reader will also find chapters such as "What is lost in the translation?"; "How do you appreciate a libretto?"; "The influence of Dante"; and "A quick look at Neapolitan." In 2015 Thomson published "Love Songs in Spanish" which comes with a CD and is useful as a tool to improve pronunciation.

At the moment he is finishing a book on how to teach English using audio-visual tools and multi-media sources. He now lives in Victoria, B.C. Asked who his favorite Italian authors are, Thomson replied "Dante and Alberto Moravia."

Class Site

Next Italian language class series:

Fall Quarter 2019
October 1 - December 10

Registration Deadline
September 10

Learn More and Register...

Dante Alighieri Member

Join us or renew your membership

Join the Fun and Support Dante Seattle through Your Membership. Members receive discounts to a variety of museums and activities throughout Italy.  A summary is available here. Or check out the Società Dante Alighieri web page

Membership goes from January to December each year and the cost for 2019 is the same as it's been the last few years: $40 for a single membership, $50 for a family. Membership is open to anyone who supports the objectives of the organization. We embrace anyone who supports our mission to encourage the enjoyment of Italian language and culture.

Your membership enables the Society to:
  • Present 7 English and 6 Italian programs each year, and host the Christmas party and the Festa di Natale per i Bambini
  • Publish our La Voce monthly newsletter, and maintain our website free to all
  • Offer an Italian Language program with beginner to expert classes for everyone who wants to learn, improve or perfect their fluency in Italian
  • Support Italian-themed community events such as Festa Italiana and the SIFF Cinema Italian-style film festival

  • Dante memberships and donations are tax-deductible
  • Your Dante Society card provides discounts at some attractions in Italy
  • Opportunity for free tickets SIFF's Cinema Italian-style film festival
  • Come to our annual wine dinner for members and guests

And this year it's even easier to join or renew. Check out our online membership and renewal options here.

Special Announcements and Events:

  • Biblioteca Italiana Seattle (BIS), a library of Italian language literature is maintained by Il Punto! The library includes the Dante Alighieri Society of Washington's collection. Membership for BIS is free and users can borrow books at no charge. Library books can be picked up by visiting BIS at 14300 Greenwood Ave N on Sundays between 2 and 4pm, with the help of a volunteer. Learn more.

  • Check out Italian Talk Radio, Mondays, 4:00pm - 5:00pm. You can find it in Seattle on KKNW 1150AM, in Tacoma on KLAY 1180AM or online live at 1150KKNW.com. Learn more about NW Italian Talk Radio.

  • The Auburn Bocce Club offers free bocce instructions on Tuesday and Thursday from 3:00 - 6:00 PM, mid-April through mid-October, weather permitting @ Les Gove Park in Auburn. See auburnbocce.org for more information.

  • DAS Language Program Honored with a Grant for the second year from the Italian Cultural Institute of San Francisco and the Consulate General of Italy in San Francisco.