Italian première of LA COLONIA by Marivaux (Teatro La Pergola, 30 November



of Marivaux

Translation of

Beppe Navello

from 30 November to 3 December 2022

(Wednesday, Friday, Saturday, 9pm; Thursday, 7pm)

Pergola Theatre

Via della Pergola, 30 – Florence

For the very first time the staging of the play by the French playwright in its Italian translation.

A utopian text of extraordinary relevance on the condition of women:

the story of a revolt of women against their law-making husbands

DARIA PASCAL ATTOLINI Artenice, noblewoman.

MARCELLA FAVILLA Signora Sorbino, wife of a craftsman.

LUIGI TABITA Signor Sorbino, husband of Signora Sorbino.

STEFANO MORETTI Timagene, nobleman.

MARIA ALBERTA NAVELLO Lina, daughter of Signora Sorbino.

FABRIZIO MARTORELLI Percinet, young peasant, Lina’s lover.

GIUSEPPE NITTI Hermocrates, another nobleman.




Sets and costumes LUIGI PEREGO



A European Theater Association production

in collaboration with Teatro della Toscana


Full price €17; Reduced (Under 30; Over 65; Teatro della Toscana season ticket holders; UniCoop Firenze members, Sunday excluded) €15; TT Young Card €8

The ticket office at the Teatro della Pergola, in via della Pergola n. 30, is open from Monday to Saturday (10am – 8pm) and, during the show, from one hour before the start of the performance.

Tel. 055.0763333 Tickets can also be purchased at Vivaticket sales points, online at and by telephone by calling the courtesy service on 055.0763333 from Monday to Saturday from 10 to 20.

© Philip Manzini
After the national preview at the Teatro Era in Pontedera on 16 November, La Colonia, a utopian text written by Marivaux in 1750, which tells of a revolt of women after a shipwreck on a desert island, against husbands who want to legislate without involving them, to build a new world in that colony lost in the middle of the ocean. An extraordinarily topical work on the condition of women chosen by the director Beppe Navello, who has also translated it into Italian, on stage from 30 November to 3 December.

With sets and costumes by Luigi Perego, music by Germano Mazzocchetti and lights by Orso Casprini, the comedy is designed for numerous characters – more than half are women, a rarity in the theatrical tradition – to whom Marivaux offers the opportunity to measure themselves against multiple interpretive registers.

The team of performers, which is part of the “Compagnia di Sala Rehearsal”, born about ten years ago thanks to Navello – is made up of Daria Pascal Attolini, Marcella Favilla, Luigi Tabita, Stefano Moretti, Maria Alberta Navello, Fabrizio Martorelli , Giuseppe Nitti, Cecilia Casini, Giulia Lanzilotto, Claudia Ludovica Marino, Erica Trinchera and Alessandro Panatteri.

The themes expressed, which resonate extraordinarily contemporary to our ears, were one of the most controversial topics in the philosophical and social debate of the French Enlightenment.

«In 1750 – recalls Navello – Marivaux decided to readapt an old comedy of his in three acts which had not been successful, recomposing it into a single act: twenty-one years earlier, on 18 June 1729 that comedy, under the title La nouvelle colonies, had been performed at the Théâtre des Italiens and, although the cast included some stars of the time such as Silvia Balletti and Pierre François Biancolelli, it was withdrawn after only one performance. Blame the text inspired by one of the most burning philosophical questions raised by the Enlightenment? Blame an excess of verbosity in a theater like the Italian one that Parisians continued to consider the heir of the Commedia dell’Arte? A meager chronicle of the “Mercure de France” is all that remains of the 1729 recital and does not allow for convincing historical critical evaluations.

«But it is a significant fact – continues the director – that Marivaux, an author now established and consecrated to fame, decides to put his hand back to that work after so many years: the problem of gender equality could, yes, be unpopular in ancien France regime, but was not to be removed forever in contemporary history, projecting its inescapable strength into a near future in which women would be protagonists. The colony, that second attempt, Marivaux destined it only for reading “in a Society”: as if to reiterate that the times were not ripe to declaim such subversive originality on the tables of the stage; as had happened to another text inspired by the ideas of the philosophes, L’Isola della Ragione, which the author regretted having led to theatrical failure after the success found instead through readings to friends and intellectuals.

«It will be said – he concludes – that staging a comedy about the women’s revolt not only does not involve risks, but it is so politically correct as to almost risk conformism. And yet, it is not conformist to listen to the words of a classic (that is, of an author who never ceases to be contemporary, to recall one of the happiest definitions of the word) on the subject of women’s issues, a social and philosophical theme far from being definitively resolved two hundred and seventy-three years later. Precisely because he takes into account with self-irony the shyness, the resistance, the ancestral fears that have always accompanied the acceptance of complete parity between the two halves of the sky. And then because it’s a comedy, a theatrical form that doesn’t take itself seriously even when it pretends to preach, but plays with the tools of good theater, with characters, with bad jokes, with the invention of shipwreck on a desert island , mythological resource in the theater to represent palingenetic utopias. And if in Marivaux’s text the ending remains prudently unsuccessful with respect to the hopes it generated throughout the time of the action, it is inevitable to feel that that conclusion is provisional and prefigures a different future entrusted to the generations to come. This is what he tries to express in this staging, the first in Italian and in our country, as far as I know, of the centuries-old history of this text ”.

The production is carried out by the European Theater Association in collaboration with the Teatro della Toscana and with the support of MIC Directorate General for Entertainment as part of the “Marivaux: le utopias” project.


After completing university studies in Italy and France, he trained in theater at the Teatro Stabile in Turin as assistant director of Mario Missiroli, between 1977 and 1981. His first direction was on contemporary texts: at the Teatro Stabile in L’Aquila, in 1983, he directed This evening from Tosti by Alberto Gozzi and at the Teatro Stabile in Turin, in the same year, The house of the engineer by Siro Ferrone, taken from La cognizione del dolore by Carlo Emilio Gadda. In those years he also began collaborating with the cultural programs of RAI, signing hundreds of texts and radio directions for the three national networks of the public broadcaster.

The first appointment as director of the Teatro Stabile dell’Aquila dates back to 1986. The most important directors by him: Oblomov’s Dream by Siro Ferrone, and an experiment in serial theater: The Three Musketeers, which lasted the entire ’86 / ’87 season. Between 1990 and 1993 he directed the Teatro di Sardegna, in Cagliari, where he directed Luigi Pirandello’s The Game of the Parts, Angelo Brofferio’s The Vampire and Henrik Ibsen’s Doll’s House. Between 1994 and 1997 he returned to the direction of the Teatro Stabile dell’Aquila (directed by Ibsen’s Woman from the Sea, Molière’s The Misanthrope, Ennio Flaiano’s The Papaleo Case). Later, with a private company, he signs the direction of Alfieri! Bishops!, Ibsen’s Builder Solness and Strindberg’s Miss Julie. He also signed, together with a French director and a Belgian director, the staging of Brecht’s Le cercle de craie caucasien at the Aix-en-Othe Festival and at the Théâtre de la Villette in Paris (1997).

In 2001 he founded the international festival “Teatro Europeo” which later became “Teatro a Corte” because it traveled through the Savoy residences of Piedmont: until 2017, the festival grew under the banner of Italian-French friendship (more than one hundred companies from beyond the Alps invited over the years), becoming a reference point for European innovation, especially for in situ creations. From 2007 to 2017 he directed the Fondazione Teatro Piemonte Europa in Turin, recognized by the Ministry of the Permanent Theater of Innovation, then promoted to Theater of Relevant Cultural Interest and which since 2010 has managed the Astra Theater in Turin. For that stage, in the same period, he created numerous successful shows presented on the billboards of the major Italian theaters, including: Women informed on the facts by Carlo Fruttero, Dette d’amour d’Eugène Durif, Il Divorzio di Vittorio Alfieri, Il Triumph of the God of Money by Marivaux, One of the last evenings of Carnovale by Goldoni; and has promoted, by inviting foreign directors (Jean Claude Penchenat, Myriam Tanant, Robert Talarczik), bilingual shows with Italian, French and Polish actors: Cinema! (in two versions, Italian, French and Polish); Bar Franco Italien; Remake. From February to May 2017 he occupied the same Teatro Astra with the imposing scenographic construction site designed by Luigi Perego for a re-edition of the saga of The Three Musketeers in eight episodes, taking up the texts written thirty years earlier for the Teatro Stabile of L’Aquila by major Italian playwrights: an adventure that involved around a hundred show business workers including around fifty young actors and which enthralled the Turin public every week for forty-eight performances in eight episodes, each directed by different directors (Navello himself, Gigi Proietti, Piero Maccarinelli, Myriam Tanant, Andrea Baracco, Robert Talarczyk, Ugo Gregoretti and Emiliano Bronzino).

Since 2019, BN has sat on the Scientific Committee of the international project, supported by the Institut Universitaire de France, Marivaux et les scènes européennes led by Paola Ranzini of the University of Avignon: among other initiatives, the publication of Marivaux’s Omnia in Italian at the publisher Cue Press. The first volume has been in bookstores since September 2021 and on November 23, 2021 it made its debut at the Pergola in Florence, for the first time in Italian, The second surprise of love, with the translation and direction, in fact, by Beppe Navello.

Since 2015 he has been a director of the Alliance Française of Turin and in 2021 he was appointed director of the Teatro Regio of Turin by the Minister of Culture.

In his professional career, Beppe Navello has directed, among others: Paolo Bonacelli, Carmen Scarpitta, Caterina Vertova, Elia Schilton, Gianni Garko, Domiziana Giordano, Laura Lattuada, Pina Cei, Maddalena Crippa, Giustino Durano, Lina Sastri, Roberto Alpi, Giorgio Albertazzi, Anna Galiena, Romina Mondello, Lino Capolicchio, Giuseppe Pambieri, Daniela Poggi, Patrizia Zappa Mulas, Franca Valeri, Geneviève Penchenat, Antonino Juorio.

Italian première of LA COLONIA by Marivaux (Teatro La Pergola, 30 November – 3 December) –