La Ballata delle Balàte

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La Ballata Delle Balàte
Photograph: Supplied

Acclaimed Italian playwright and actor Vincenzo Pirrotta performs his Mafia-themed monologue in Sydney this month

For two nights only, the Italian Cultural Institute in Sydney will present La Balata della Balàte, a monologue written, directed and performed by acclaimed playwright, theatre director and actor Vincenzo Pirrotta.

The story centres on a Mafioso fugitive who proclaims his faith in God while at the same time putting into practice the cruel and distorted logic of the Mafia. Set on Good Friday, the play is a deep reflection on the paradoxical relationship of the Cosa Nostra and religion as the main character looks back on his solitary and brutal life.  

Pirrotta, who returns to Australia following the success of 2015’s Terramatta, has said of the play: “I wrote it driven by the urge to expel this cancer from my land.” The monologue is accompanied on stage by Giovanni Parrinello’s original music performed by Dario Sulis. 

The text will be performed entirely in Sicilian dialect, a purposeful linguistic choice which reinforces the characterisation of the protagonist. But don’t worry if your Sicilian is a little rusty: there will also be surtitles in English.

See La Balata della Balàte at the Auditorium of Italian Forum in Leichhardt on April 7 and 8.

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