THE RETURN at the ST JAMES THEATRE STUDIO

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We’re delighted THE RETURN, the first ever translation of the award winning play by Sergio Pierattini, has been selected to appear at the beautiful St James Theatre Studio, in the heart of central London, as part of the Studio’s Play Week.

The St James is a newly refurbished state of the art venue, located at 12 Palace Street (off Buckingham Palace Road, 2 minutes from Victoria), London, SW1E 5JA.

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Excited by the chance we were offered, we went back to the rehearsal room,  and what an exciting process it has been!
We found some new nuances in the text and also decided to explore it physically, using the transitions between scenes to go deep into each character’s feelings.  The language of the translation has also been tweaked to give even a more accurate sense of the original linguistic landscape.

But let’s not give too much away, you’ll have to come and see it!
Bookings are open so buy your ticket before it’s too late!
Box Office: 0844 264 2140 | boxoffice@stjamestheatre.co.uk

And now as a preview, some pics straight from the rehearsal room, by our great photographer John Watts.

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Please help us fund THE RETURN

 

After our sell out last August at the Etcetera Theatre, LegalAliens International Theatre Company is now raising funds to produce a full three week run of THE RETURN followed by an international tour.

 

THE RETURN is the first ever English translation of the award winning Italian play Il Ritorno, by acclaimed playwright Sergio Pierattini, one of the greatest voices in contemporary Italian theatre.
The show isn’t just energetic, funny, engaging and extremely contemporary – with its issues of immigration and crisis of traditional values – but also features an original and new approach to translating theatre, thanks to the collaboration between our translator Matthew Morrison and our cast of bilingual actors.

 

In order to help us offset the costs of a run in London we set up a SPONSUME campaign to raise funds.

 

IT’S IMPORTANT FOR US TO PROVE THIS PROJECT HAS BACKERS SO WE NEED AS MANY PEOPLE AS POSSIBLE TO SIGN UP. IT DOESN’T MATTER HOW SMALL YOUR DONATION, WE NEED YOUR SUPPORT! We have 65 days to raise £3500.

Please follow this link if you’d like to donate. Awards available to the more generous backers.

http://www.sponsume.com/project/return

 

 

Thank you in advance for your kindness
To find out more about LegalAliens and The Return please visit: legalalienstheatre.wordpress.com
You can also follow us on Twitter: @LegalaliensITC

 

THE RETURN – THE FIRST PRESENTATION

We’re glad to announce The Return is going to be presented as a work in progress performance SATURDAY THE 24TH of MARCH at the MENIER GALLERY DOWNSTAIRS (51 Southwark Street, London SE1 1RU)

The Menier Gallery has organised an art and theatre festival running from the 15th to the 31st of March in its lower ground, and we’ve been invited by artistic director Linnie Reedman to perform The Return at 1pm and 5pm.

This will be the official premiere of this play in English, and all form of feddback will be highly appreciated.

Please come and support us, give us your comments and enjoy the play!

THE RETURN – the project and development

Il Ritorno/The Return, by contemporary Italian playwright Sergio Pierattini, premiered during the 2007/2008 season to critical acclaim, winning the Critics Award for best new play.

THE PLAY

Set in Bergamo, Northern Italy, the play takes place in the kitchen of an Italian family, whose daughter has recently returned from a long absence. As the plot the develops, it is revealed that she has spent the past seven years in prison for the death of her fiancée, a Moroccan immigrant who had been employed by her father. Pierattini’s script juxtaposes the seriousness of the material, and its commentary on intercultural relations, with darkly humorous dialogue, a surrealist sensibility and a creeping sense of claustrophobia to capture the disintegration of the traditional Italian family.

A moment from the Italian production of Il Ritorno

The play is based in part on on-site research conducted by Pierattini in Bergamo, a city that has experienced rapid change as a result of industrialization in the 1960s and 1970s. Pierattini interviewed newly wealthy locals in the gentrified suburb of La Malpensata and recent immigrants in the centre city neighbourhood of Via Quarenghi; the complex picture that emerged is reflected in the play, prompting critic Rossella Battisti to describe the playwright as “a sensitive narrator of small, contemporary tragedies” (L’Unita, 2008). While the play’s given circumstances arise from a specific Italian context, British audiences will likely see parallels with contemporary life in the UK as they discover a darker, less-familiar side of Italy.

THE PLAYWRIGHT

Born in Sondrio, Northern Italy, in 1958, Sergio Pierattini graduated from the Accademia Nazionale di Arte Drammatica “Silvio d’Amico” in Rome and since then he has been active as a writer, actor and director. Since 2005, he has taught radio playwriting at the National Film School in Rome. His award-winning plays include The Return (Best Play, National Association of Critics 2008; short-listed for the Ubu Prize); Un Mondo Perfetto (Special Jury Award, Riccione Theatre Festival 2007); Il raggio bianco (Flaiano Prize 2006); and La Maria Zanella (The Ubu Prize 2005).

THE TRANSLATION:

We were lucky to strike a collaboration with translator Sabrina Cammarata and playwright Matthew Morrison, whose work has been recently produced by renowned London theatres such as the Gate and the Finborough.

Their greatest challenge was to re-create the “colour” of Northern Italian in English. Since we firmly believe our strength lies in our being a non-British group presenting a foreign play using foreign accents, we decided with Matt and Sabrina NOT to use an English dialect.  Not only because it would be ludicrous for us to pretend to be from Sheffield or Nottingham, but mainly because we chose this play for ability to talk about universal themes through events taking place in a very specific context.

But how to translate Northern Italian idioms in English? How to recreate an homogeneous world that an audience will “get” straight away? These are the challenges we’ve battling with.

In order to have a feedback and create an interest towards the play and its themes we have been offering workshops to University students of playwrighting, translation studies and Italian.

We’ve also presented a first draft in front of a selected audience of writers and directors at the Actors Centre in December 2011.

                    

THE PRODUCTION

Encouraged by the feedback we received, and more confident about our choices regarding language and translation, we’re now entering the process of production.

    

Our cast – Jean-Paul Dal Monte, Elena Mazzon, Lara Parmiani, Anna Elena Pepe and Federico Zanni – will be directed by Becka McFadden, who has previously directed LegalAliens in “Neither here nor there”.

In order to raise funds to cover for our work and expenses for this first stage of the project we’ve applied for Arts Council Development funds. However, in the present climate, public funds are hard to obtain, therefore we’re also organising fund-rasing events such as parties and raffles and we warmly welcome donations.

To be invited to one of our fund-raising events, please join our mailing list by contacting at info@legalaliens.org