Essays on criticism - Theatre Performances
      O - Z
      Dorothy. Disconcert for Oz

Franco Quadri, A thousand Dorothies for a disconcert

Renato Nicolini, "The Disconcert for Oz" of Fanny & Alexander is a world apart

Back to top   A thousand Dorothies for a disconcert
      Franco Quadri, la Repubblica, 2008 February 4th

The Italian region Romagna continues to have the dream to change the expressive ways of theatre. And now the company Fanny & Alexander, making an attempt to upset the formality, similarly to the company Raffaello Sanzio, which tries to adapt the scene to the visual arts, in the play “Dorothy Disconcert for Oz” by de Angelis and Lagani, starts from the subject of the famous film with Judy Garland and  develops it by multiplying the interpreters of Dorothy, the heroine, who has the name of a hurricane, and overlapping the identity with the ones of some heroines of the opera, and of some characters of Landolfi, following the principle for which Cage stratifies many musical executions in the mean time.

In the play “Dorothy, Disconcert for Oz”, which was interpreted in the RomaEuropa Festival, the plurality of the ways of expression is showed on the scene and specially between the beds, where on the stage the actresses and part of the spectators lay; while the false wizard dominates the situation from upstairs, isolated from the phosphorescent lights of the organ pipes, played by Marco Cavalcoli, the director- dictator of the event of which he will accuse the artificiality and the causality, but that for the spectator translates in an iridescent adventure full of expressive surprises.

(translation by Elizabeth Annable)

Back to top   "The Disconcert for Oz" of Fanny & Alexander is a world apart
      Renato Nicolini, L'Unità, 2008 April 1st

The group "Fanny & Alexander" was founded in Ravenna in 1992 by Chiara Lagani, actress and dramatist, and by Luigi de Angelis, director. The name is already peculiar: taken from the film of Ingmar Bergman, of author, but filmed for the television and about the role of mass-media in our time. “Disconcert for Oz” opens a new cycle of plays of the F&A, derived from “the Wizard of Oz” of Frank L. Baumand and from the film with Judy Garland, that Victor Fleming derived from the book in 1939, which will conclude in 2010 at RomaEuropa Festival. For the spectators of “Disconcert of Oz” are available places in the parterre, but also four lines of beds on the stage, where they are also part of the scene. They have taken off some lines of stall. These uncomfortable beds aren’t either of Brecht or of psychoanalysis. They hint at the minimum equipment of survive of who is enclosed, in a stadium to protect himself from a hurricane or in a controlled camp, because he is a political prisoner or a clandestine immigrant. We are in a different situation, in comparison to the avant-gardes of the Sixties and Seventies. In that period the companies were asked to do something, to participate at the taking of the Winter Palace. Nowadays we are asked to remain – perfect mirror of the present time - passive.

The beginning of the play  is unexpected and dazzling. In a niche on the background of the scene appears a little Hitler on his knees, perfect duplicate, but alive, of the Him of the artist Maurizio Cattelan. "Him" - as directing an orchestra (which plays from the balcony of the theatre) - will act in English all the sound track – effects comprised – of the film of Fleming. In 1939, the year of this coloured and childish film, many times shown by surprise in the Roman film clubs, is the time of Hitler, when Hitler fascinated Chamberlain, who defined him in a speech at the Chamber of Commons "a man on whom is possible to trust, when he gives his word". Is this the hurricane that falls on the spectators. And conceptually on the actors, that feign surprised in the condition of who is acting the last play of the "Fanny & Alexander", Amore taken from a text of Tommaso Landolfi.

Francesca Mazza is still Lucrezia of Mar delle Blatte, but in the mean time – together with the violinist Nicoletta Bassetti and with the soprano Annalisa Bartolini – the Witch of the West. Fiorenza Menni is the Gurù of La pietra lunare and the Witch of South - together with the soprano Milena Arskova and with the oboist Maria Chiara Braccalenti. Chiara Lagani is the “woman P” of La piccola Apocalisse, is the Witch of the North, together with the pianist Janinka Nevceva and the soprano Desanka Pop Georgievska. The game of the superimpositions isn’t mechanical, but it avails of surprising coincidences (an example for all: the woman P of Landolfi dies in a puddle and the Witch of West dies because the water destroys her) between the texts of Landolfi and the "score" of the Wizard of Oz. The effect of total theatre (of our times) is reached by the luminous scenography – nearly six hundreds of fluorescent neons which compose an organ with pipes of light – inspired to the art of Dan Flavin and James Turrel, and, specially, through the reference at the execution of the musical score (from the Butterfly to the Pygmalion composed at four hands by H. Coignet and by the important illuminist thinker J.J. Rousseau) at the Europeras of the spectacular John Cage. The negative freedom intended as freedom to stop the execution theorized by Cage, and the will of project, capable to commit itself up to foretell the 2010: are the antidotes suggested by Fanny & Alexander universe of concentration from which the play starts.

(translation by Elizabeth Annable)


Dorothy home

Theatre Performances

Grey Speech | WEST | NORTH | SOUTH | Kansas | AMORE (2 atti) | HIM | Heliogabalus | Vaniada | Aqua Marina | Ardis II | Ardis I

      Back to top

Back to Essays on criticism

Back to the Archive's Index

Ask for more information