This show is a mixture of lecture and performance, although in no way dryly academic, and presents a selection of the flower of mediaeval and modern Italian jester's texts chosen so as to offer the spectator the essence of jesting, which is conceived far more in terms of stage performance than in terms of the printed page.
What is offered the spectator is the chance to see and hear poetic texts from the thirteenth and fourteenth centuries, examples of a literature once considered minor and still not often studied, yet which are not only enjoyably vital but also in some cases extremely interesting for how they resolve certain questions with a modernity that almost prefigures much later literary experiments.
The texts range from a much-discussed classic like Ciullo (or Cielo) d'Alcamo's ‘Rosa fresca aulentissima‘, long at the centre of critical debate, to unexpected wordplay like Immanuel the Roman's ‘Bisbidis', by way of well-known texts beloved of afficionados like ‘The Birth of the Villein' by Matazone da Caligano and the extraordinary and grotesque drama of Ruggieri Apugliese's ‘Parody of the Passion'.
Everything is framed by two pieces written by the performer: a free re-reading of a short tale by Franco Sacchetti and, at the finale, a homage to the ancient technique of the grammelot, a language almost totally lacking recognizable words based on an onomatopoeic technique of imitation of other languages.
Every text is preceded by a historical and critical explanation by the actor, who introduces the modern spectator to a greater comprehensability not only of the text itself but also of the thematic and stylistic issues arising from texts long distant from us in time, even though still incredibly up-to-date in many ways.
• length: 80-90 minuti