Pamela Villoresi and David Sebasti
APPUNTAMENTO A LONDRA
by Mario Vargas Llosa
Translation by Ernesto Franco
Stage Design Francesco Ghisu
Costume Designer Lucia Mariani
Music by Germano Mazzocchetti
Lighting Design Emiliano Pona
Directed by Maurizio Panici
Associazione Teatrale Pistoiese & Argot Produzioni
In collaboration with
Spoleto52 Festival dei 2 Mondi
Appuntamento a Londra is an absolute novelty for theater, written by Mario Vargas Llosa, one of the most appreciated and famous writers worldwide who marks this play with some of his dearest tones.
The story is a sharp and profound reflection on the theme of identity and on the secret life of people.
The performance is also a study on the value of friendship and on feelings, on the subtle thread that keeps us together as human beings and as man’s deep attraction for the “other”.
Two childhood and teen-age Peruvian friends bump into each other in London after several years. In their encounter, they relive their past, blending happy memories with less happy ones that they believed to have buried or that they had ignored till then.
A theater strongly inspired to literature in a fruitful exchange between the different expressive languages. Among the actors, an absolute protagonist of the Italian theatre landscape, Pamela Villoresi, together with David Sebasti.
“Appuntamento a Londra” does not take place in the real world but moves into the pure subjectivity of the protagonist, a territory that initially seems to be made of painful and sweet memories, and in the end we discover is mainly made of inventions: a world of pretense. Thus, in this work, besides and beyond what I consider its central themes – friendship, the forging of identity as a vital as well as a creative and rebellious act, the rites and spells of sex in the secret lives of people – another subject arose. A subject that has always fascinated me during the writing of many of my novels and in all my plays: pretense and life… the role that one plays in the other, the way one nourishes, confounds, rejects and completes the other in each single destiny… and the stage is a privileged space to represent the magic that people’s life is made of: the “other” life we invent because it cannot be lived but only dreamt of thanks to the marvellous lies of pretense.”
Mario Vargas Llosa
|A fulfilled and very busy man, apparently happy, between a trip and a working meeting, is captured by a restlessness that opens a breach inside of him towards a subjective and interior oneiric journey, forcing him to confront himself and his most secret fantasies in a game of mirrors and refractions where he ends up having difficulty finding himself.|
The overbearing and unrestrainable projections of his fantasy that emerge from the deepest part of his being, activate and generate an-other, attractive and repulsive at the same time, yet strongly seductive.
The encounter forces the man to face his possible “other” identity: just like a two-faced Janus, he looks into himself as into a mirror, and his “secret life” explodes in a series of possible variations that he explores, re-living or re-creating them.
Throughout the play, the “identities” chase each other and confront themselves until they find a possible solution, always and however open.
Identity: this is the central theme of the text.
The complex of passions / emotions / dreams and behavior that during the course of our life develop into a so-called “personality” find the most open representation in the protagonist of this play. Possible paths and different possibilities are covered with disquiet and zeal all the way to a non-banal, fascinating, feared, desired conclusion.
In his “Four Quartets” T. S. Eliot writes, “… what might have been and what has been / point to one end, which is always present. / Footfalls echo in the memory / down the passage which we did not take / towards the door we never opened / into the rose-garden.”
In this ridge, in this borderland, the protagonists move around constantly, balanced between a real world and an imaginary one, both concrete and real and both offering the same intensity of real life.
Vargas Llosa’s text is an enigma, a journey-research into the deepest and most hidden part of each human being. As he himself asserts, “a subject that has always fascinated me… pretense and life… the role that one plays in the other, the way one nourishes, confounds, rejects and completes the other in each single destiny… and the stage is a privileged space to represent that magic that people’s life is made of: the “other” life we invent because it cannot be lived but only dreamt of thanks to the marvelous lies of pretense.”
Our performance is a theatrical game that uses complex languages and images projected and perceived as ghosts that help us reveal uneasy truths hidden in the deepest of the protagonist.
The stage is a concrete space continuously opening to a series of other possible visions, thus creating in the audience a vertigo, helping it break its vision of everyday life and inviting it towards a possible elsewhere, towards a world different from the real one.
The original music supports this project evoking other possible worlds, nostalgia and lost places, a garden of memory that is yet never consolatory.
The theatrical device backs up and supports the actors committed to this thorny path in order to help them constantly create and re-create that complexity that responds to the name of identity.