The first performance of the Italian theater project Voci nel deserto took place on June 9 and 10 at the Figment Festival, the traditional contemporary art gig that is held every year at Governors Island.
Voci nel deserto was created in 2009 in Rome as a collective of artists and is now present in many other Italian cities such as Bergamo, Bologna, Rimini, Ravenna and Catania. Voci nel deserto uses quotes from traditional theater works - from Plato to Pasolini, from JFK to Thucydides - to draw the audience's attention on contemporary social issues.
Francesco Adinolfi in "Voci nel Deserto"
Coordinated by the Kairos Italy Theater, Voci nel Deserto plays in different languages, and the New York City performance of the theater collective was very successful.
In Rome, Voci nel Deserto performs every Friday at the Brancaleone Center, and its performances have become more frequent every year. The theatrical rave, open to all and free of charge, is now been replicated in several Italian cities.
The project draws upon the commitment and generosity of actors and the public, it constitutes an open spatial-temporal passage between past and future and embodies a collective idea of "civil theater."
"Our work aroused an exceptional response," said Francesco Andolfi, a young italian actor who was taught at the Stella Adler Studio of Acting and was one of the main leads in the New York City show of Voci nel deserto.
"In May we had already held a bilingual reading in New York City, - Andolfi adds - 'The Vatican Fall,' which we performed in English and Italian. The script is by Frank J. Avella and it was directed by Laura Caparrotti. The reading touched upon the issue of sexual abuse in the Catholic Church. I had already noticed by then that our project was making its way into New York’s theater scene.”
2013 has been declared the year of the Italian culture in the US. “I’m sure,” says Andolfi, “that 2013 will be a very important opportunity for Italian theater in the United States, which is already highly appreciated thanks to the work of professionals such as Caparrotti and Avella. They are exposing the American audience to tough themes and to the works of famous writers, such as Flaiano and Buzzati. They know how to draw the attention of the very demanding, yet generous, American audience.”
The fragments that constitute the Voci nel Deserto
scripts are selected from traditional theater works to fit current events and excite critical thinking. Each quote, each thought, each idea surprises the audience for being so adherent to the present times. The first 250 fragments were collected in a book. Now the fragments are 500, and a second anthology of them is about to be printed. The website vocineldeserto.it
, together with the Facebook page and YouTube channel of the group, are intended to be a meeting point for those who want to participate by contributing to the ongoing collection of fragments.