“Readings of Magna Graecia”: mythology, history and theater at the crossroads of Mediterranean cultures

September 19, 2022 5:19 pm

The theatrical review “Readings from Magna Graecia” kicks off next weekend, an integral part of the program financed by the Calabria Region for the celebration of the 50th anniversary of the discovery of the Riace Bronzes.

These are four appointments, from 24 to 27 September next, with big names in Italian theater and a series of artistic and spectacular interventions within the main art spaces of Magna Graecia, from Reggio Calabria to Locri passing through Casignana, a unique territory in the world, a metaphor for the encounter between cultures and always a crossroads of the Mediterranean.
To take the stage in this rediscovery of the richness and history of Magna Graecia will be Antonio Catania, Anna Bonaiuto, Pasquale Anselmo, Annamaria De Luca, Max Mazzotta, Giuliana De Sio, Debora Caprioglio and Francesco Montanari that – between Plato and Socrates, Ulysses, Aristophanes and many others – will bring together mythology, history and theater around that cradle of culture that was Magna Graecia, a combination of myths and styles that gave birth to legends and narratives, today a land to be discovered and experienced 12 months a year.


“Let’s make executive – said the vice president of the regional council with responsibility for the branch, Giusi Princi – a first project of the broader plan that we have prepared to celebrate the discovery of the bronzes, which will see us engaged until next August 2023 in a series of activities of a national and international character, all aimed at narrating this Calabria that is relaunching itself starting from its historical heritage “.


Under the artistic direction of Lindo Nudo and curated by Vincenza Costantino, the Readings of Magna Grecia will take place from 24 to 27 September 2022 (always at 7.00 pm with free admission) in historic and evocative spaces of Calabria: from the National Archaeological Museum of Reggio Calabria – that on September 24 will be the stage of the BrisElenadi Anna Bonaiuto and of the Mythical Calabria by Antonio Catania – at the Archaeological Museum of Locri, which on September 25 will come to life thanks to the excerpts from Timeo and the Symposium of Plato brought to the stage by Pasquale Anselmo and the free adaptation in key to monologue of the Long Night of Medea by Annamaria De Luca. And again: on September 26, in Casignana Villa Romana, Max Mazzotta plays The Knights of Aristophanes while Giuliana De Sio will read the adventures of Ulysses through the Monsters Polyphemus and Maga Circe. On September 27, in Piazza Castello Aragonese (Reggio Calabria) Debora Caprioglio will find herself face to face with the Riace Bronzes, in the year of the fiftieth anniversary of their discovery, thanks to a theatrical device in Io Sono Mito, while Francesco Montanari interprets The Process, taken from Plato’s Apology of Socrates and Crito.


In addition to the evening readings, Masterclasses and Workshops will also take place on 26 and 27 September at the Spazio Teatro of Reggio Calabria. On 26 September, at 6 pm, the theatrical show La ragazza con l’Arco – Atalanta is staged, with Adriana Eloise Cuzzocrea and Gaetano Tramontana by the Spazio Teatro Theater Company (recommended age from 8 years onwards). On 27 September – from 2.30 pm to 5 pm – a theatrical Masterclass will be held by the actor and director Lorenzo Pratico. Finally, on 27 September – from 5.30 pm to 7.30 pm – space for the Writings of the Tragic Workshop, curated by the actor, director and playwright Gaetano Tramontana.

Admission to each event is free, booking is welcome. Info and reservations: 3928686788, further information on: www.bronzi50.it

It is possible to stay updated on events and initiatives on the official social networks, Facebook and Instagram, @ bronzidiriace50 and following the official hashtag # bronzi50. Also, on the site www.bronzi50.it all the news will be periodically published, with in-depth information and interviews also available on the dedicated YouTube channel, Bronzi di Riace Official.

The Bronzi50 1972-2022 celebratory event is wanted and promoted by the Calabria Region in collaboration with the Regional Secretariat for Calabria of the Ministry of Culture, the Municipality of Reggio Calabria and the Municipality of Riace, the Regional Directorate of Calabria Museums, the National Archaeological Museum of Reggio Calabria, of the Superintendence of Archeology, Fine Arts and Landscape for the Metropolitan City of Reggio Calabria and the province of Vibo Valentia, of the University of Calabria and of Unioncamere Calabria and the Regional School Office for Calabria. The entire design of Bronzi50 was strongly desired by the Calabria Region.


September 24
National Archaeological Museum of Reggio Calabria
Start at 19


With reference to the volume Mythology of the Great Greek by Ettore Bruno and insertions of texts from Le Troiane by Euripides and Philoctetes by Sophocles. And again The myth of the Sirens, of the city of Sybaris, of Milone, the greatest athlete in history, of Setea, tortured and killed by the Greeks, of Philoctetes, of Epeo, builder of the Trojan horse. The mythology that crosses with the ancient chronicles gives us the measure of the greatness of a civilization that has left deep traces in our culture: Magna Graecia.
Musical accompaniment: Arianna Luci (Violin)


BrisElena is a text that stages two women from Greek mythology, Elena and Briseide, who share the same destiny. Tragic fate of women kidnapped and violated by human selfishness, by the blindness of power, by the barbarism of war. Two lonely women who, with tenacity and resistance, reveal the paucity of the politician. Man who, obsessed with consent and eternal invincibility, sows hypocrisy and death in his days and in the days of the world, making his own life and the life of others a specter devoid of dreams and passions.

September 25th
Locri – Archaeological Museum
Start at 19


“When I received the invitation from the Artistic Director Lindo Nudo for a themed reading on Magna Graecia, which I immediately accepted with great pride, the pride of a son of Calabria, first of all I thought about what the my Recital. – Anselmo says on his reading – It will not be an advertising brochure pitted with impunity. It will not be a Lectio Magistralis. I don’t have the qualifications to do it. It will not be an Aseptic Read. I am an actor, not a fine speaker. My participation, on the occasion of the fiftieth anniversary of the discovery of the Riace Bronzes, is a convinced and happy return home. A return home to breathe the scent of my land. A return home to rediscover the sounds and words of my language, of my dialect. A return home to make places of the past resound in my footsteps, never like now, inside me so present, so alive. The reading of the pieces Timaeus and Plato’s Symposium will become a vocal concert through which to revive the atmosphere and emotions of those events ».


The performance is a free monologue adaptation of Corrado Alvaro’s Long Night of Medea, with contaminations by other significant authors who outline the character of Medea, the stranger, who claims the decisive role of architect of Jason’s fortunes.
Pointing out how every act immediately or practiced is the result of some lie or deception, as the protagonist of his choice to search for a better civilization than his own and discover what is further away, beyond the sea, becomes more and more the scapegoat for tensions and throws of power, even of the same Jason Yes excuses Medea for the crimes that are ascribed to her by a civilization that proclaims itself to be progressive, but which remains anchored to the logic of power and human beings always based on deception.
Music: Remo De Vico originals.

September 26
Casignana Roman Villa
Start at 19


Aristophanes is the author who first hands over to the people the sharpest of his weapons of liberation: satire, the subversive laughter that reveals the baseness and brutality of a grotesque, false, selfish power. Among the comedies of Aristophanes, The Knights is probably the one that best represents this painting, corrupt and unscrupulous servants who compete for the favors of Popolo, an old curmudgeon and a bit of a bewilderment, are the eponyms of a struggle for power in which the evil can only be defeated by the worst. Through the wit and simplicity of comic language, this grotesque war unfolds with flattery, promises, blandishments and meanness. All the references that Aristophanes addressed to the politicians of his Athens turn out to be perfectly fitting for any character of our times, as if that of the bad ruler had become a mask, always the same whatever the actor who wears it.
Musical accompaniment: Antonio Belmonte.


Giuliana DeSio will read the adventures of Ulysses through the Monsters Polyphemus and Maga Circe, told in Canto IX and Canto X of the Odyssey, making the spectator relive very high fairytale moments of one of the most beautiful stories of all time.
Musical accompaniment: Marco Zurzolo (sax and flute) and Pino Tafuto (piano).

September 27
Piazza Castello Aragonese (Reggio Calabria)
Start at 19


Dramaturgical adaptation by Roberto D’Alessandro. Starting from a theatrical device, the narrator is face to face with the Riace bronzes on the fiftieth anniversary of their discovery. It was Pythagoras himself who indicated the exact day and time in which for just 50 minutes they would acquire the faculty of speech and answer the questions of those who would be in front of them. So what other question to ask the bronzes if not the one that haunts archaeologists and scholars from all over the world since their discovery, namely: who are you? And the bronzes will respond, narrating from time to time the exploits and heroes that populate the poems and tragedies. So they will be Agamemnon and they will narrate the siege of Troy, of the return home, of how he was killed by his wife and his lover Egisto, of the pain of Electra, of Orestes. They will tell about the visionary hero Anfierao and Tideo, friends of Polinice. They will tell of Ajax the son of Oileus, one of the heroes of the siege of Troy. They will tell of Eteocles and Polynice, sons of Oedipus. Cursed by their father and therefore at war with each other and how they killed each other. With excerpts from the Orestea trilogy, Aeschylus ‘Seven Against Thebes, from Sophocles’ Electra. Between the poems of Sappho and Nosside in a supernatural dialogue between the spectator of the enchantment and the two bronzes, we will arrive at the essence of these two creatures from the mists of time, namely that they embody the myth in their bronze power.


taken from Plato’s Apology of Socrates and Crito
The only thing that Socrates says is that one must not live in injustice, both towards men and towards god. No fear of death. Death must necessarily be a pleasant, deep and dreamless sleep to find yourself in the afterlife with the greatest heroes of antiquity. Once again he does not contradict himself, thinking of the pleasure that he will try in this case to examine them one by one, to find out who is wise and who is not. Socrates reminds the judges that bad things cannot happen to a decent man, and urges them to question their children as he would have done, to bring them closer to virtue. For Him: «Go as it goes, I want to be at God’s heart. His law is obeyed. We must defend ourselves. But I want to walk towards him ».
In the role of Socrates: Francesco Montanari.
In the role of the accuser and Crito: Fausto Costantini.

“Readings of Magna Graecia”: mythology, history and theater at the crossroads of Mediterranean cultures