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The universal language of Dario Fo


By Matthias Martelli

This presentation is a journey through the theater of Dario Fo, one of the greatest theater playwrights and actors of the 20th century. Through performance and storytelling, Matthias Martelli will introduce us to Dario Fo’s “total” theatrical style, where the actor, alone on stage and without the aid of scenes, is able to fire the imagination of the public with the sole use of his voice, his body, and his gestures. Martelli has taken Mistero Buffo around the world, a play that earned Fo the Nobel Prize in Literature. Martelli will illustrate the artistry of Fo’s theater, inspired by the traditions of medieval jesters and focusing in particular on the grammelot, a special technique in which the author can reproduce the sounds of foreign languages. By staging the Maestro’s explosive irony, Martelli will demonstrate Dario Fo’s international contribution, proving how his blistering satire is still relevant today.

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Matthias Martelli

Matthias Martelli is an Italian actor, playwright, and jester. A graduate of the University of Bologna and the Performing Arts University of Turin, he has written and performed several monologues for major Italian national theaters, including “Raffaello, il figlio del vento” (2020) and “Dante, fra le fiamme e le stelle” (2021).

Endorsed by Maestro Dario Fo, he is the interpreter of "Mistero Buffo" currently on tour in Italy and Europe. The London Theatre magazine called Martelli’s Mistero Buffo “the most compelling piece of physical theater one could witness in a lifetime.”

He starred in Prokofiev’s Peter and the Wolf together with Turin’s orchestra of Teatro Regio.

Winner of numerous national awards, he is a promoter of jester theater, in which the actor makes extensive use of mimicry and the body. He is the author of several books, including Il Mercante di Monologhi (2017), Nel nome del Dio Web (2019), and Il Naso del Duca (2022).


Conferenza d'attore messa in scena alla Chapman University, Los Angeles

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