from Yitzchak Katzenelson and An-ski

Genetic memory and urgency of the present. Dybbuk was our way to face the burning issue of the Shoah by transforming the pain of this inevitable encounter into live and pulsing matter.

A theatre work difficult for me to catalogue as such, considering how deep the involvement which accompanied its gestation was. However, this show/non-show required an approach made of rigorous expressive and dramaturgic choices, in order to reach its goal.

A few are briefly outlined here; please refer to other pages
for the origins of this musical theatre. I add however a few fragments from my own "work notebook".

Text and dramaturgy

Music and sound

Image and movement


The Song of the Massacred Jewish People, by H. Janeczek

The Dybbuk by An-ski

Excerpts from our Dybbuk

In addition to Dalla sabbia dal Tempo,
which I consider indispensable for the comprehension of this page, please see in regard to several subjects - Judaism, Moni, Teatro Franco Parenti - the following

Il processo di Joseph K
Note spettinate
Famosi in tutta Europa
Ballata di fine millennio

and for an itinerary within the shadows of the theatre... Vanità delle vanità

a show by Mara Cantoni and Moni Ovadia

musical re-elaborations and arrangements by
Maurizio Deḥ   Alfredo Lacosegliaz   Gian Pietro Marazza

sets by Mara Cantoni   costumes by Luigi Benedetti

sound by Mauro Pagiaro    light design by Amerigo Varesi

with Moni Ovadia    Claudia Della Seta    Olek Mincer

and TheaterOrchestra
Ivan Calaminici   Gianni Cannata   Amerigo Daveri  
Maurizio Deḥ   Cosimo Gallotta   Aleksandar Karlic
Alfredo Lacosegliaz   Gian Pietro Marazza   Massimo Marcer
Patrick Novara   Luca Trolese   Emilio Vallorani

produced by CRT Artificio
On the brink of the precipice

There was a motto at the Theresienstadt concentration camp: I am alive as long as I create and am able to conceive culture. It is worth reading this phrase and to try rediscover its primary meaning, that of conceiving or creating in a generative function. This is a time of rubble, actual or imaginary: each gesture made demands vigilance.

Rubble. I observed the rubble of Berlin, what was left of Berlin in 1945, for the longest time; I also observed at length the precise traces of the book burning which, already in 1933, announced all the death which was to follow. Suddenly, my mind ran to the Teatro Petruzzelli destroyed by flames. My mind put the images side by side. Half a century gone by and still the same thing, the same wound: the triumph of stupidity, useless desolation. read on

It is better said immediately: Moni Ovadia's and Mara Cantoni's Dybbuk was not made for those who think it is possible or imperative to forget what happened in Europe half a century ago. And then again, perhaps it is precisely for them, in the same way remorse is for the guilty and justice for the unjust. (...) One hundred minutes of continuous, almost unbearable, emotions, with no holes or voids; at the end, a triumph...

(Giovanni Raboni,
Corriere della Sera
, 18 march 1995)

Rarely have we witnessed a theatrical ritual so mysterious and necessary, so full of feeling, so consuming that it leads us to think we are within the heart of the greatest tragedy of History and not within the fascination of a scenic ghost. (...) The audience appeared to be under a spell and didn't dare to applaud even the most agonizingly intense scenes. Only at the end, did uncontrollable and liberating applause explode...

(Osvaldo Guerrieri,
La Stampa,
9 april 1995)

At once, we can see that the limits between ritual and theatre, liturgy and performance are blurry, ineffable and impossible to perceive. (...) Poetical fascination and incontrovertible document of a process of systematic cancellation. (...) At the end, the audience dissolves the knot of its anguish in hearty applause.

(Mauro Manciotti,
Il Lavoro
, 18 january 1996)

In short, Dybbuk takes theatre back to its deepest and most original meaning, that of a personal and collective ritual, encounter and testimony beyond time.

(Dario Vassallo,
Il Giornale
, 18 january 1996)

It is difficult to talk about Dybbuk, since a ritual cannot be told. The ritual must be lived through.

(Dante Cappelletti,
Il Tempo
, 16 november 1995)

The photographs of Dybbuk
are by Maurizio Buscarino
The photographs of the
Teatro Petruzzelli are by Ansa
and R.De Benedictis/Sintesi