This event is free and unticketed
Figli d'arte Cuticchio la storia del soldato
Pre-show Talk

La Storia del Soldato

with Professor Michael Wyatt, Filippo Ciabatti and Figli d'Arte Cuticchio
April 18, 2023

This event occurred as part of the 22/23 Public Talk season. This is an archived view.

Join us for a discussion on the centuries-old tradition of Sicilian puppetry and breathing new life into Stravinsky's masterpiece with "La Storia del Soldato."

22/23 Public Talk

This event is free and unticketed.

Learn more about the performance >


Filippo Ciabatti
The recipient of the 2020 American Prize in Conducting (college/university division), Filippo Ciabatti, a native of Florence, Italy, is the Director of Orchestral and Choral Programs at the Hopkins Center for the Arts, Dartmouth College, and the Artistic Director of the Upper Valley Baroque Ensemble. As guest conductor, Mr. Ciabatti has appeared with numerous opera companies and orchestras in Europe and North and South America. In 2020, he served as cover conductor for the Music Director of the Portland Symphony Orchestra (Maine). At the Hopkins Center, he conducted members of the Dartmouth Symphony Orchestra in a collaboration with the Martha Graham Dance Company.
As a conductor, Mr. Ciabatti has collaborated with artists including Philadelphia Orchestra concertmaster David Kim, baritone Nathan Gunn, cellist Gabriel Cabezas, pianist Sally Pinkas, flutist Luciano Tristaino and mandolinist Carlo Aonzo. An advocate for contemporary music and collaborations between musical genres, he premiered a secular oratorio composed by renowned jazz composer Taylor Ho Bynum and commissioned a cello concerto by composer Noah Luna, aired during the NPR show From the Top. In 2018, he led a Dartmouth Symphony Orchestra tour to Italy, performing Mahler's Fifth Symphony in prominent venues and festivals, in collaboration with the Orchestra Toscana dei Conservatori. In 2018, he was invited to be a Conducting Fellow at the Aurora Music Festival (Sweden), under the direction of Jukka-Pekka Saraste. During the festival, he conducted Hannah Kendall's 2017 composition, The Spark Catchers, in the Konserthuset Stockholm.
As a collaborative pianist and vocal coach, Mr. Ciabatti is on the faculty of Camerata de' Bardi, the Young Artists Program of Teatro Grattacielo in New York City, and the summer opera programs "Opera Viva!" in Verona (Italy) and "Scuola Italia per Giovani Cantanti Lirici" in Sant'Angelo in Vado (Italy). In 2021-2022, he served as Music Director of the Young Artists Program of Opera Middlebury. He has played for masterclasses of Renée Fleming, Nathan Gunn, Isabel Leonard, William Matteuzzi and Donald George. In Italy, he worked as vocal coach for the Cherubini Conservatory, Maggio Musicale Fiorentino and Florence Opera Academy.
Mr. Ciabatti holds advanced degrees in piano, choral conducting and orchestral conducting from Italy and the United States.

Mimmo Cuticchio
Born in 1948, Mimmo Cuticchio's childhood was marked by the fantastical world of the opera dei pupi (the traditional term for Sicilian puppet theater) and his early formation took place through an apprenticeship with his father in this tradition. But as he grew up, Mimmo found himself facing a social and political reality increasingly distant from the values inscribed in traditional Sicilian popular culture, and in 1969 he made the momentous but fraught decision to break with his father and established a small puppet theater in Paris.

The rupture with his father led Mimmo to another Sicilian master, Peppino Celano, who saw Mimmo through a second apprenticeship, in the earlier tradition of cuntastoria (a Sicilian form of partially improvised solo narration whose roots reach back into antiquity), more intense than the first but one that opened up new artistic horizons. Following Celano's death, Mimmo opened a puppet theater in 1973 in the heart of old Palermo on via Bara all'Olivella, the Teatrino dei Pupi di S. Rosalia, where he and his company still work today. Mimmo founded the Associazione Figli d'Arte Cuticchio in 1977 in order to consolidate his company's varied activities.

Mimmo and his collaborators have been engaged for over 40 years now with the search for an expressive performative language that in presenting anew an older and more static cultural form aims to create an original kind of theater of truth and poetry, and it is this continual process of exploration that has made the Figli d'Arte Cuticchio so enormously appealing to theaters and festivals throughout Italy, Europe, Africa, Asia and the Americas, where the company has been regularly invited to perform for more than three decades.

Michael Wyatt
Having studied philosophy and theology at the Università Gregoriana (Rome), Michael Wyatt received his PhD in Italian Studies at Stanford University in 2000. He has previously taught at Gonzaga College High School (Washington, DC), Northwestern University, Wesleyan University, the Università degli Studi di Trento and Stanford University, where he was also the founding Associate Director of the Center for Medieval and Early Modern Studies (CMEMS). He has been the recipient of fellowships at the Wesleyan University Center for the Humanities, I Tatti–The Harvard University Center for Italian Renaissance Studies, and from the National Endowment for the Humanities. His work is primarily engaged with the premodern cultural and intellectual history of Italy, focused within a European and Mediterranean matrix and dealing particularly with issues related to translation as both textual and sociopolitical practice. He has lectured extensively in the United States, Italy, England, France, Spain and Australasia. Two current book projects are John Florio and the Circulation of 'Stranger' Cultures in Stuart Britain, and Dido's Legacy: Oblivion and Promise in Italy's Past Present.


Le Patin Libre
"Murmuration" an adventurous ice work by Le Patin Libre, being performed in Thompson Arena April on 13-15 as part of the Hop's Spring 2023 Season
Spring 2023

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