Dead Man Talking   Conceived by  ALESSIO SAPIENZA

A terrible invasion of fleas is spreading the plague all over. Pulcinella is terrified and will do whatever it takes to beat those fleas to the punch! Will he succeed to escape the ravenous epidemic?

Am I dead? I'm dead or am I noi? (bites himself) Ouch! I'm alive then! I'm Alive! Pulcisella has resurtected! But, wait a second, hey Folks, we must run away, now, quick! There's a pandemic! A big bad thing! What? You know nothing? Oh Lord! Fleas my friends! Run for your life, move! We're assaulted by fleas! But not normal fleas, noooo, these are natural born killer fleas and if they bite you you got diarrhea, gonorrhea, measles, rubella and hemorrhoids in addition! Then you fall on the ground like a rotten pear and PATAPAM, you die. But I can be smarter than fleas! And quicker! I will kill myself before they do! Pulcinella, you're a genius! Now, how could i do it? Let's try to hang myself with a rope...no, no, this was the neck would stretch out giving the fleas even more space to bite, bad idea...Got it! I will do it with a knife, like the japaneses (Lazzo of Seppuku)

No, it does not work. That's it, I have enough, if Pulcinella has to die, he must die happy! Chef! Give me wine, and give me maccaroni! I'll get them all, who cares? (a flea bites him) Ouch! Oh my god, a flea! She got me! They've found me! Help! Go away! Stay away...

 

 “Song of the Flea”, Giulio Cesare Croce, 1607)

 

“Catch it! Catch it! Kill it! Kill it! This traitorous flea,

This molesting flea

does not leave me rest

it's so annoying i can last any longer,

Catch it! Catch it! Kill it! Kill it! This traitorous flea,

I'm wretched,

These fleas has devoured me

here's the blood coming out

Catch it! Catch it! Kill it! Kill it! This traitorous flea,”
 

Holy Mary, how do I stop the blood? Dabbing, must dab everything, give me wine, I dab! Maccheroni! Dabbing! Can't take any longer! (falls apart)

The Ruler's Plague   The Killing Game / Eugene Ionesco adapted by Amir Lavie

Capitano as a mayor speaks to his citizens about a mysterious plague and its effects.

Fellow citizens and visitors. An unknown evil has recently contaminated our fair city. 

It is not a war, there is no killing, and life goes on as usual for many among you almost happily. All of a sudden, however, people have started dying in houses, churches, on street corners, in public places with no signs of previous illness and without apparent cause. People have just begun to drop dead. Can you imagine such a thing? And what is worse is that these are not isolated cases. A death here and there is something we could adjust to if necessary. But the deaths are increasing constantly, I might even say in a geometrical progression. In our city there are homes where entire families have been wiped out. The last two reports of this terrible phenomenon came from cities far from our shores. Tel Aviv and ancient cities as Paris and Berlin in Sicily too, it would seem, but we no longer have historical documents reliable enough to state firmly whether it was Sicily or Argentina. 

I have gathered you here in our virtual town square one last time to tell you what is happening to us and that what is happening to us is incomprehensible. We are devastated by a plague without visible cause. 

I must call for strong arms to dig graves. All building sites, and empty lots and areas must be expropriated, since our cemeteries are full.

I ask also for women volunteers to determine the cause of deaths, to examine even the living members of a home for some traces of swelling or spots and to report such indications to the authorities so we can quarantine potential carriers.  

Every contaminated house will be marked with a red cross one foot high on its front door with the inscription: "Lord have mercy on us".

Anyone entering in a sick house becomes a suspect and will be incarcerated in that house. 

We do not know of a remedy for this plague. We can only attempt to restrain it, so that perhaps some of us will be able to survive. But let no one count on that. 

In any case, there shall be no more begging, vagabondage or banqueting. Public entertainment is forbidden. Shops, restaurants and cafe's will be closed to limit contamination if indeed, contamination is the means of propagation. Because it is possible that this plague descends upon us directly from heaven. 

There will be no mor public meetings. Groups of more than three people will be dispersed. It is also forbidden to loiter. Citizens are requested to move about capsules two by two so that one can constantly watch the other, and report at once anyone who collapses. Now go back to your home and remain there. Do not go out unless it is absolutely necessary.

Thrills & Spills    Conceived by CHIARA D'ANNA & DIDI HOPKINS

Arlecchino (Chiara) followed by his faithful Colin, Zanni (Didi), was sent to fetch some medicines. They are really powerful medicines to cure Pantalone's bad illness...a dangerous illness...a contagious illness! 

  • The first time we meet Arlecchino he will be on his way to fetch these powerful medicines. 

  • The second time Arlecchino, on his way back to his master, has the medicines and a very complicated patient information leaflet. Obviously, he cannot read it very well,neither remembers what has been told! In doubt, he thinks it would be a good idea to test the medicines himself...but he likes them a bit too much! He leaves eating and drinking his master's medicine. 

  • After a while Arlecchino comes back. The medicines have all gone (empty bottles!) ...and they start having their effect! Already explosive by nature, he certainly did not need any extra help! Exect an "explosive finale" !!

The last survivor    Conceived by CRISTINA COLTELLI

Andreina Andreini, last survivor of Andreini's family: the most famous Commedia company of the renaissance. She's in quarantine since the plague of 1630, trying to keep things going on, including the family business and her children (Faust and Margherita) education. She has two plague doctors as bodyguards to protect her from the virus and from a disturbing, repeated knocking on her door...

Get Busy               Conceived by ENRICO BONAVERA

BRIGHELLA – He complains because of the pandemic not only theatre are shut down but restaurants and Inns as well.

So sad, he says, because good health starts from good nutrition!

After exalting his international cuisine, he decides to reveal in pantomime his masterpiece receipt: Carbonara.

But the truth is he's broken. And he can survive just because he prepares some strange potions for Pantalone.
 

PANTALONE – Quarantine is his cup of tea. He's totally happy with that, so nobody can come to bother and ask money. Moreover, he decided to start a new business: production and selling of medicines.

Not for the sick people, but for the healthy ones!

He explains his plans and medical directions and look for a healthy subject to test his new vaccine: Arlecchino.

ARLECCHINO – He's terribly sick cause of the medicine Pantalone gave him and shows the strange reaction he has. But in the end, the only real illness he has ever got is hunger. No medicine has aver cured that.

So he decide to fight the virus with his ultimate resource: a tiny piece of bread.

After all, good health starts with good nutrition!

The lacture              Conceived by GILI IVRI

Dr. Atzati, a world renowned expert of plagues, diseases and other problems, in his lecture dedicated to "covid 19- new discoveries and findings" based on his long term and broad research.

In Lockdown            Conceived by HOWARD GAYTON

The characters are Mr. Punch (the English puppet version of Polchinello); Judy - his long suffering wife; and Baby.
Mr. Punch is left to look after the Baby. The Baby has symptoms of a virus. What is Mr. Punch going to do!?

 A Cure For A Cure             Conceived by LEE WHITE

No text. Dottore and Baggatino - Two brains. One brain cell. No clue.

 The Jeanivian Mutation    Conceived by Barak Gonen

Belin is in a zoom call with her husband Pantalone who is sick and quarantined in their home,

Text by Barak Gonen

Belin:

Oh darling, how are you? Yes, our neighbor has updated me with your condition, so I left everything and here I am…. Saying goodbye (she weeps)

Are you….. are you ready? (weeps)

What do you mean "for what"?

(to her lover off screen) not now jean…..

(to her husband) what do you mean "for what"? for your death (weeps)

You are quarantined for so long, you have all the symptoms. The neighbor told me that you won't last long…. You have about 25 minutes?

(to her lover) Jean… stop it…..

(to her husband) Jean is taking good care of me. It was brilliant to send me away to your best friend so he can protect me from the virus, and so I won't suffer from the fact that you are close but quarantined so I can not be with you (weeps). It kills me that I'm not near you in your last hours or even minutes. 22 minutes from now you will be gone.

(to her lover in a naughty way) stop…. Stop

 

(to her husband) stop! Don’t try to comfort me. Me….. a widow…. I won't make it on my own! That’s it! I'm on my way to you now. (she pretends to leave and then stop) but, oh no, I will not make it on time. Its an hour drive and you have only 19 minutes and 40 seconds left, and how can I step outside with the pandemic is raging and in front of me (she sees Jean naked off screen) …. Is a man… and not just any man (she remembers her husband is listening) not just any man… the man I love and will always love…. My husband. My beloved husband. In 16 minutes, you will be just a memory. 

I don’t want to hear about you signing your final will. I can't think about you signing your will that gives me the house, the bank accounts, the trust fund and a fat pension…. I can't stand the fact that you hid the document in the drawer at the entrance of the house, so I will find it easily…. But oh…. How can I think of my life after you're gone… a grand vacation, a luxurious house with a view to the ocean, me and Jean ….. ohhhh Jean…… 

(remembers where she is) Jean prevents me from leaving. He prevents me from getting to you, my love, so that I won't catch the disease that is killing you slowly in 12 minutes and 50 seconds…. Starting now (weeps)

I hope you will find the strength to step outside, take a deep breath and die in the open air. (weeps)

Oh…. I will I keep on living without you? I am sorry that I can't be strong right now, i'm sorry for breaking apart.

 

 

Just 9 minutes and 20 seconds to go

(she weeps again. During her cries it has to be clear that jean is pleasing her sexually and the cry is transforming to orgasm)

 

What did you say?

Excuse me? What does it mean "you are getting better"? you are at risk group!

What does it mean you have no fever?

 

(to her lover) Jean stop it!!!!!

 

No more coughs? You went for a walk today? Oh damn… ah… its wonderful, you are getting better….

What about the will? The vacation? What? You want me to come home…..

(she looks at Jean and then at her husband and that she acts out "symptoms")

 

The truth is that I am not that well (coughs) I think I got it from Jean- He is not vaccinated. What? You want me to come home because you are vaccinated? No… i… I got the mutation… from Jean…. It’s the Jeanivian mutation… it's not that known but it is deadly.

I am sorry I can't breathe, I have to get off-line for at least an hour…. Jean, heal me!

(she disconnects)

Earthquake        music - NANDO BRUSCO    Lyrics- Traditonal

Calabria is a beautiful, spectacular, yet restless land. Naturally isolated by the mountains on one side and by the sea on the other, its territory has been plagued by a huge number of earthquake swarms leading to destruction and further epidemics that have left a heavy mark not only along the territory, but inside people's souls. 

On February 5th, 1783, an earthquake destroyed 109 towns and villages, with countless victims. This event is still alive in the collective memory of the people, thanks to a traditional chant (source: A. Garritano in Il canto popolare in Calabria, Rubettino 1984) naming and describing the places which were severly devastated and that lost, all of a sudden, “the best part of human beings”.

Text: Traditional, Calabria, south Italy

Music: Nando Brusco

TEXT

On the 5th of febraury, oh what a dread!

The great fear of God's rage.

All at once the earth started trembling

undoing valleys, mountains and graveyards;

 

Palmi was the most alive town. Now it's mute.

Now its name is: Parmi the wretched.

First all the churches went down

and the fountain collapsed into the market.

 

The next day, when a new tremor began,

Scilla and Bagnara together collapsed,

soon followed down by Marina, Catanzaro e Bova,

and Santa Cristina, together with the whole valley.

 

Terranova was caught by surprise and wonder

as the whole town was turned upside down like a church bell

And from Scilla down to the coast,

people and boats were taken by the she-wolf of the sea

and the best part of human beings was lost

 The solution     Conceived by OLLY CRICK

“I know it all: so much in fact, my knowledge flies in all directions,
it’s very hard to keep on track with single answers to your questions,
One answer’s boring, tedious and dull, my verbiage you cannot cull,
And so, without more lowly yearning, listen up and start your learning:
My mind sucks knowledge like a leech, I absorb, and then I teach …”
Dr Burymore (mission statement)

Colombina vs the Lockdown  The Killing Game / Eugene Ionesco  adapted by Amir Lavie 

Colombina can't stand it! She has to break the lockdown. now!  

My fellow citizens- Brothers and sisters. I have gathered you here today to speak to you about the future of our city. Enough is Enough! I have disregarded the orders which outlaw public gathering and I see that you have zoomed out  and done the same by coming here in great numbers. Hey you! How are you? Do you zoom in often? Well… where was I? Ahh…. (remember). They want to keep us shut up in our homes and our fears. With the pretext of a mysterious sickness raging among us, and they are not above using any pretext whatsoever, using than the pretext of a plague, we have been immobilized, rendered impotent, paralyzed, dominated, and destroyed. The sickness kills as many people indoors as it does out. Even more indoors than the air is close and bacteria develop in favorable conditions. I've read about it… actually I've been told by a liable source. Out in the open the sickness has much less chance to spread. In any case, it has no more chance outdoors than in. It is bad moral policy to remain confined, bad for us, but for our unscrupulous governors, it serves their purposes. And what is their purpose?  Does anyone know? Well… Yesterday while I was cleaning my Kitchen for the third time in a day. Suddenly I bumped my head at the table, and after the blackness I saw the light. I've realized they want to prevent us to speak freely, to gathered, to make living. I've been unemployed for a year! Free of salary! No restaurants! No pubs! Can't find any job. No meetings. I hardly remember how to communicate. And why is that? That's because they are afraid from our unity.  Afraid from exchanging ideas. When we are separated it is easier to mislead us. I wonder if this so-called disease is not one of their inventions? And why is it called mysterious indeed? It is to hide the real reasons behind it. The reasons I shall reveal to you today.

Who benefits from the continuation of this epidemic? We, ourselves? It cannot be us, since we are dying from it. This death epidemic is political! We're playing right into the hands of our oppressors.

We fight against each other; surviving is what drives us. We are unemployed, falling apart, even are children are falling apart not meeting with friends….. Who takes care of the people? Who? Who takes care of me? Who will make sure I will not loose it in this time of plague?!!!! There is no value in a vaccine, if you don’t heal the damage of solitude! what do we need a cure for, if we are sick as a society? if we have forgotten what it is to be essential, meaningful to something or someone? When will I make something other then cleaning, laundry and the everyday business of the house….? when will I go out to have some fun? when will I meet people not in squares?! communicate? those in power fight among themselves "who was the first to see", "who has brought the vaccine", "who didn’t give up" and "who stood on guard".

What they don’t fight about among themselves are: "who will help us?", "who will bring us back our sense of value", "who will give us hope".

Brothers, who will give us hope? 

Punch's Pandemic        Conceived by SARAH RATHERAM

Pulcinella is in lockdown, busy stockpiling goods in his attic and defending them against anyone and everyone. His neighbours, meanwhile, are being generous and community-spirited - to Pulcinella there is no excuse for such behaviour. A global pandemic is for furthering one's self-interest, and one should behave as badly as possible.
Deciding his neighbours need to be taught the error of their ways, Pulcinella orders an electric guitar, intending to blast them into submission with music while embracing his inner rock star. But he doesn't get exactly what he ordered....

Dance, dance, whoever you may be

I am the King of the Plague says me –

Ignoring all the scientists with antisocial glee

I’ll go ahead and party like it’s 1603.

 

I’ll spread around a rumour that not wearing masks is brave

Then send out invitations to a super secret rave

While I sit at home and tweet about the fecklessness of youth

If I use a silly pseudonym they’ll never know the truth.

 

Dance, dance, oh come and have a ball -

Smarming round the colleague who I’ve set up for a fall

Fighting over loo roll in the local shopping mall

While complaining this insanity has sent me up the wall.

 

Shaking hands and laughing at the ‘Wuhan Clan’,

Encouraging covidiots who think it’s all ‘God’s Plan’

Starting fights on Twitter that I watch as they implode

And take up all the pavement as I walk along the road.

 

Dance, dance, dump your used masks in the sea,

Coughing on your aged gran around the Christmas tree 

Let’s call it China Virus and we’ll blame it on 5G

And dance cos we sense our own mortality.

Love affair with death    Text by Fabio Mangolini, Lorenzo Franciosini, Francesco Andreini 

Song: Giovanni Giacomo Gastoldi

Do not know who I am? 

I am that great Captain, trembling of the whole world. 

I feel my body a fortress, 

my head a castle, 

my arms cannons 

and my courage is trembling of the whole world.

When I pass the earth trembles, 

the sky is darkened, 

the Sun and the Moon flee, 

men cry, the horses get crazy ihhihiiihhhiiii! 

And women get pregnant. So, only with a look. 

Once I entered hell, where I found Pluto, Proserpina and Death at the table, who were so afraid to see me in their darkness that I, knowing their little courage, quickly did a French somersault and with a fist broke the roof of the hell that caused an earthquake and a tsunami in the ocean due to the noise.

 

Who will see me of this fate,

that does not marvel and spread,

since he knows I am enough

to conquer death itself. 

In order not to be lacking in chivalry and not to neglect my greatness, one day I invited me to dinner with Death and the Devil, my dear friends.

After the sumptuous banquet was over, the Devil took leave from us by returning to the squalid banks of the Acheron; Death alone wanted to stay with me for supper and sleep.

Remaining that it was Death to dine and sleep with me, dinner and bed were immediately prepared for the amorous conflict. We dined cheerfully that evening and then went to sleep in the same bed, Death and me.

And because in the morning and in the evening he had been drunk vigorously, stimulated by the liquor of Bacchus and the pleasures of Venus, I took amorous amusement with Death throughout that very happy night.

And so much and such was the contentment of both sides that Death became pregnant with me.
 

Long live, long live Bacchus 

With its sweet and good liquor

Long live, long live Bacchus 

With its sweet and good liquor

Let's all drink, that in the drink

The heart really rejoices

What are we late in drinking, ehin?

Toast Toast, Iò Iò Iò!

What are we late in drinking, ehin?

Toast Toast, Iò Iò Iò!

Questions? Email us at hasimta.dellarte@gmail.com

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