Sunday, 18 November 2012


Photo: Nino Barbieri
(Venice, Italy) If you have ever been to Venice, you will know that the statue in the center of Campo San Bortolomìo at the foot of the Rialto Bridge is of Carlo Goldoni (1709-1792), whom Voltaire called, "the Italian Molière." Goldoni's farcical plays about the Venetian society in which he lived reflected the dying days of the great Republic, which had lasted more than a thousand years. According to tradition, Venice was born in 421AD; the republic was conquered by Napoleon in 1797 -- just five years after Goldoni's death.

To say that Goldoni has recently made a comeback is an understatement. After receiving rave reviews in London, one of his plays just closed to critical acclaim on Broadway. Which play was that, you ask? Why, it was The Servant of Two Masters, which has been zapped into the 21st century under the title of One Man, Two Guvnors. From Wikipedia:

Photograph: Cindy Ord/Getty Images
One Man, Two Guvnors is a play by Richard Bean, an English adaptation of Servant of Two Masters (Italian: Arlecchino servitore di due padroni), a 1743 Commedia dell'arte comedy play by the Venetian playwright Carlo Goldoni. The play replaces the Italian period setting of the original with Brighton in 1963. The play opened at the National Theatre in 2011, toured in the UK and then opened in the West End in November 2011, with a subsequent Broadway opening in April 2012.


 Blimey, It's a Hit! Broadway's One Man, Two Guvnors Recoups Its Investment

Bob Boyett and the National Theatre of Great Britain said on Aug. 22 that their acclaimed Broadway production of One Man, Two Guvnors, which won star James Corden the 2012 Best Actor Tony Award, recouped its $3.25 million capitalization in the week ending Aug. 19.

The Complete Comedies of Carlo Goldoni (1830)
With all the renewed interest in the great Venetian playwright comes a new scholarly quaderni annuali produced by top experts in the field. Promoted by the Civic Museums Foundation of Venice - Carlo Goldoni's House, in collaboration with prestigious institutions such as the CISVE - Interuniversity Centre for Studies Veneti, the National Edition of the Works of Carlo Goldoni, Teatro Stabile del Veneto and the Universities of Venice and Padua, the new "Studi Goldoniani" are divided into studies and reviews which offer scholars a chance to stable critical debate, and to ensure readers a detailed and updated review of the "stato di lavoro."

According to the brochure, "the journal aims to complement and animate the permanent laboratory for philological and historical-critical investigation represented by the Edizione Nazionale delle Opere di Carlo Goldoni, and the newly created Edizione Nazionale delle Opere di Carlo Gozzi: thus participating fully in reviewing tested but hitherto unproductive historiographical paradigms, and radically redesigning the features of the theater world (and others) of the 1700s."

Studi Goldoniani
To order a subscription of the beautifully-bound Studi Goldoniani and/or the online subscription, please visit LIBRA web, the online platform of the publisher, Fabrizio Serra Editore.

In times like these, when the world reaches a critical pitch, mankind has learned that sometimes the best thing to do is just laugh.

"Painter and son of nature," wrote Voltaire, at that time the arbitrator and the dispenser of fame in cultured Europe, to Carlo Goldoni, then a rising dramatist, "I would entitle your comedies, 'Italy liberated from the Goths.'" From The Comedies of Carlo Goldoni, edited with an introduction by Helen Zimmern, published 1892 by David Stott, London.

Ciao from Venezia,
Venetian Cat - The Venice Blog

1 comment:

  1. In times like these, when the world reaches a critical pitch, mankind has learned that sometimes the best thing to do is just laugh.