“I decided to stage this masterpiece and to do it as I learned to do in this profession: with simplicity and love; love for my origins, love for Eduardo, for Luca, love for those Christmases spent in front of the television to warm us up the heart between a handful of struffoli and a game of bingo”. This is what he ‘confesses’ Vincenzo Salemme, explaining the ‘genesis’ of his reinterpretation of the milestone of the theatre Eduardo De FilippoThe ‘Christmas at the Cupiello house’now on stage from February 15th to March 10th at Sistine Chapel in Romeafter the stops in Naples, Turin and Milan and before continuing on to Bologna and Florence.
“I ventured into the masterpiece of Edward, setting up a crazy machine, in front and behind the scenes, on which more than forty people work – says the Neapolitan director and actor – Bringing on stage for the first time such a fundamental work for Italian theater was an immense joy . Through Eduardo’s wonderful text, ‘breathing’ his words, I was able to rediscover a cultural civilization that I believe is fading in today’s world. Also for this reason, therefore, I couldn’t be happier to have found him on stage again.”
Remember then Salemme: “I went to Cinecittà to try to be an extra in some of his comedies that he was recording for Rai. And I met him during a break in the production. He had a pale wine-colored shawl over his shoulders, a nightgown and long johns that ended inside his wool socks. It was the costume of the most beautiful, bitterest, funniest, most sentimental, most intense, most melancholy, most festive, most poignant comedy in history: ‘Christmas at the Cupiello house’. 46 years have passed since then.”
In the meantime, he continues, “I became a full-time actor and, after having had the privilege of working with Edward
De Filippo in his last two years on stage, I was able to continue attending his magnificent theater thanks to 12 years in his son’s company Luca De Filippo. Then for more than 30 years I have been writing and staging comedies and shows written by me. And I was also lucky enough to work in cinema as an actor, director and screenwriter.”
(Of Enzo Bonaiuto)