Sunday, February 04, 2007


"In pace nulla si conviene all’uomo
quanto la calma e la moderazione;
ma se risuona lo squillo di guerra,
s’ha da imitare quel che fa la tigre:"

This was a complete surprise. 65 minutes of the Compagnia Pippo Delbono's version of Henry V, not an obviously perfect way of spending a Saturday afternoon when I could have watched England beat Scotland at Twickenham, was pure pleasure. An almost full house in The Swan saw Pippo Delbono, looking like a middle-aged, overweight, part-shaven biker with a beer bottle, turn into HenryV and extract a range of emotions from the audience through his powerful stage presence and the beguiling use of movement and music. His dance of triumph and despair will remain one of the most compelling images of the Complete Works season.

Sadly,nobody seems to have reviewed the production yet, but here's Pippo speaking about his work in La Repubblica.

"They are actors, who I chose for their truthfulness. But be careful: the fact that I am bringing real homeless people on stage is not most important. I do not want to be a hyper-realist, neither to show the «cases». From the fifteen members of my group six are university graduates, and one of us is an excellent true-born actor Pepe Robledo with whom I have been working for twenty years. I am after theatre which involves all the differences. As life: I live in one village in Liguria, where you can meet a beautiful girl in bikini, a little further you meet a beggar, then a businessman, an immigrant, group of children. Life is full of differences and also the theatre must be such. In my company there is a man called Bobó, who does not speak nor hear, but he is a lively authentic personality, and whenever he is present on the stage, he can just look around - and he is important. He used to live in an asylum, but now he is out - thanks to theatre - and he lives with me, he can travel, he found his place on earth again. So the art is also the possibility which offers emancipation to those who are rejected by society for being different."

Personal Star Rating [out of five] ****


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