concept and direction Danio Manfredini
with Danio Manfredini e Vincenzo Del Prete
direction assistant Vincenzo Del Prete
music project Danio Manfredini, Cristina Pavarotti e Massimo Neri
light designer Lucia Manghi, Luigi Biondi
video collaboration Stefano Muti
La corte ospitale
Special thanks to everyone that has supported the project by the crowdfunding campaign, in particular thanks to the ‘co-producer’ Sotto-Controllo, Elsinor Teatro Stabile di Innovazione, Associazione Versiliadanza, Collettivo di Ricerca Teatrale – Vittorio Veneto
Running time 1h 30’
Danio Manfredini, one of the most intense voices of the contemporary Italian theatre, presents his latest work, Vocazione. Already director of Dramatic Art Accademy of Teatro Bellini in the years 2013/2016, awarded with the Premio Speciale Ubu in 2013 and Premio Lo Straniero in 2013 as ‘teacher of many people remaining stubbornly at the edge of the great circuits and refractory to the temptations of media’, the actor, writer and director Danio Manfredini tracks in his latest work a picture of the theatrical actor, of the various stages he crosses and that lead the actor to the creative creation. Starting from authors such as Checov, Shakespeare, Mariangela Gualtieri, Testori or Bernhard that explicitly deal with the condition of the actor of theatre, Manfredini, together with Vincenzo Del Prete, extracts fragments in order to research the theatrical artist’s condition and the delicacy of the moment he’s going through.
I am starting a theatrical path which is focused on the theme of the actor and his life. I focus on this subject in a moment in which it seems useless, unnecessary, to deal with theatre, art and consequently with the theatrical actor-writer-director, a figure that seems to be abandoned. Even if I’m open to the technology advances and to its potential in the art, I think the central figure of the artist in his human essence lacks. Maybe, they say, theatre is about to disappear, but we have to give light at this sunset. It would be a privilege, in any case, to glorify the sunset time, so close to the darkness.
Read Graziano Graziani’s interview to Manfredini
From the interview ‘Theatre is vocation – Conversation with Danio Manfredini’ by Graziano Graziani, for the monthly magazine ‘Quaderni del Teatro di Roma’, number of December.
According to you, in theatre is the meeting with other forms of art less risky today if compared to one or two decades ago?
I keep going this path. The first results of the performance I am working on, entitled Vocazione, make me think that the different artistic languages keep on talking each other according to me. They keep on contaminating one another. From the image to the text, the dance, the prose. They are all elements of the same language, which have to shape some expressions that not always choose the same discipline to express themselves. It is true that in the last few years there were many monologues focused on the actor: it is also due to economic reasons. Many of these monologues then shaped around the narration theatre, that focused on some elements but impoverishing other aspects of the scene. I am not passionate about narration, honestly, for the same reason why I cannot read novels, but only essays and poetry: my mind have difficulty with simple narrative. I believe tale is a weak line because it is not a dramatic line. Narration made theatre less dramatic. While, in my opinion, it is important to go back to a dramatic theatre. Of course my discourse is not absolute, but it is just personal taste.
Your next work title is Vocazione. Which are the origins of Danio Manfredini’s vocation?
I didn’t want to “make theatre” when I was a child. I did it at school and I was terribly anxious. By chance, on my 18th birthday a person knocked the door: César Brie, selling books about theatre. I lived in Cerchiate di Pero, in Milan hinterland, a place where it is very hard to get to by chance. I bought the book and started to attend his theatre workshop. I agree enough with Minetti in “Ritratto dell’artista Vecchio” by Thomas Bernard, according to whom theatre is a vocation. Yet, it is a vocation you build little by little, it increases in the course of time, it is not something you have immediately and in a definite way. Theatre is a kind of experience that let you live life in a more enhanced way than what life itself can offer you. With the time there you increase your affection with regards to the ability of the theatre to open the doors, moods, mental conditions that often life doesn’t let you explore. If you explore them you cannot go back anymore. While in theatre you can explore and then go back. You can explore the murder without necessarily killing. It let you listen not only to your life, but also to other people’s life, and to experience it and to understand what means that kind of destiny. But then, there is the return to himself/herself.