My initial work investigated how site-specific, historical environments impacted
both production processes and audiences’ experiences. At the time, I was teaching classics and
pursuing graduate studies in architecture, while living in a historical part of
my native country, Italy. I began
creating theatre in and around ancient structures, and found that when actors
worked in those rich environments, they became sensitive to, and impacted by,
the sites’ “ghosts” and the imprint of time and humanity. Similarly, audiences found a resonance
between the space and production, experiencing their own lives intertwining
I next began focusing on plays that would necessitate deep psychological
investigation, which led me to the study of contemporary English and American
drama. I translated several of these
plays into Italian, and directed and produced others. I invited the American playwrights Craig Wright
and Bob Ford to the Festival and to other events I artistically supervised in
Genova and at the Università degli Studi di Genova.
I remain fascinated by the psyche of the characters in American
plays: ordinary people in ordinary
circumstances are given the status of “heroes,” either in their own daily
routines or when put into extraordinary circumstances. I wanted to explore more of this psyche,
because what I was witnessing in most of my Italian actors' work was a great
physical connection to the space and their bodies, but little truthful
I came to the U.S. to learn more about psychologically-oriented theatre
approaches. My M.F.A. training has
included the study of Meisner and Stanislavsky methods.
Yet, I find that the psychological approach is not totally
satisfactory. It is a great way into
certain kinds of characters and plays, but it often confines the actors - young
actors especially - into the small world of their characters' heads and disconnects
them from the physical realities of what is happening in the moment on stage.
This dissatisfaction led me to turn my attention to combining physical
theatre and psychological techniques, including my continued investigation of
Commedia dell'Arte (of course), as well as Viewpoints, Alexander, Michael Chekhov
and Meyerhold 's Biomechanics. I have been briefly exposed to Lecocq and to the
Rasaboxes and I intend to learn more
Integrating the environmental, psychological and
physical approaches is ultimately what I am working on at the present time and
will be focusing in the future.
I am interested in helping actors give themselves
permission to react to instincts and stimuli without uniquely relying on the
language but connecting with their body in the given space.