Trilogy of science and theater with the Compagnia del Sole in Bari: ‘In Nature you can only try to understand’

Behind the scientific discoveries, the great cultural revolutions, there are curiosity, method and creativity. Ingredients that push to overcome conventions, acquired data, limits

Study, passion and above all many questions have moved the great scholars who have written the history of knowledge.

There Company of the Sun, born between Rome and Bari in January 2010 and founded by Marinella Anaclerio and Flavio Albaneseproposes one trilogy of theater and science dedicated to an audience of all ages within the “Adriatic Happiness” Festival scheduled for House Theater of Pulcinella di Bari (free admission appointments with reservation: 0805344660,

Read At the theater with science. Here is the ‘Adriatic Happiness’

Love for knowledge, theater and science

Ambient & Environments interviewed Flavio Albaneseactor, director and teacher, with a long experience in theater but also in cinema and on TV.

Flavio Albanese, Company of the Sun in The Messenger of the Stars (Ph Laila Pozzo)

The Compagnia del Sole proposes a trilogy of theater and science. It seems like a “strange” combination but how and why can theater teach children the fascination of science? And why did you choose to tackle the science topic?

We have been dealing with theater science for more than 15 years, we have collaborated and coordinated for many years some beautiful projects with the Piccolo Teatro of Milan dedicated precisely to the relationship School and Science Theater and since then we have continued to work on it in particular with the collaboration of professors of the Physics Department of the State University of Milan.

The Theater cannot teach science, but certainly it can stimulate the audience to ask questions, and above all to change the quality of his questions (and this is the first step in trying to understand science and its processes). In these works it is also easy to understand, for example, that scientific and humanistic subjects cannot be separated from each other but are complementary to each other.

Galileo adored Ariosto and Dante, Maxwell wrote beautiful poems and perhaps not everyone knows that Science arises precisely from Philosophy… Mind you we do not make shows in which we talk about planets and stars making witty jokes and giving information that can be found on the internet … that is generic information that has nothing to do with theater, we try in every show to ask ourselves questions, from reconstruct the human and mental processes of great scientists, to verify them with university teachers, to transform them into an important topic for us and to have fun sharing it with the public. These shows are certainly for children because we use a clear and accessible language but they are also suitable for adults because each of our shows with the mask of theater and sometimes of comedy, hides rigor, study and competence.

For many years we have also dealt with Theater and Philosophy, we bring Plato’s dialogues to the public of young and old and we have discovered that some of these dialogues can entertain the audience a lot and at the same time activate a very similar way of thinking in the mind. to the scientific one.

What relationship should we have with Nature and its wonders? Why can theater help us rediscover its beauty?

Nature is our true teacher. We find any question and any answer by observing nature. This thought that reaches us from the Presocratics through Leonardo da Vinci is the key to Man-Nature relationship.

There is an important detail, however, that we must accept and that is that we cannot understand “everything” because “everything” is in constant motion, “everything” is never what it seems, nothing is definitive. It is said of the theater: “What seems true is false and what seems false has the essence of truth”. The important thing is to understand that in Nature one can only “try to understand”. As my friend, professor of quantum mechanics, Marco Giliberti used to say: “Dear Flavio, you don’t understand physics … but you get used to it”. Love is born later, “love for things comes from the knowledge you have of them” said Leonardo, “when love and knowledge meet, beauty is born and when beauty is born, the soul breathes” answered a friend of mine Sufi… here in these few lines I think I have summarized my vision of the relationship between Nature, Knowledge, Theater and Beauty.

Flavio Albanese, Company of the Sun, in “The messenger of the stars” (Ph Laila Pozzo)

What do Galileo, Copernicus, Kepler, Newton and the other scientists of the past, protagonists of “The messenger of the stars” have to teach us?

In this show in particular, with Francesco Niccolini the author and Marinella Anaclerio the director, we analyze theusefulness of error in the scientific process. We start from literature, from Ariosto’s Orlando Furioso (which Galilei particularly loved), and taking advantage of Astolfo’s trip to the moon in search of Orlando’s wisdom, we invent a meeting with all the scientists and philosophers who marked the great Copernican revolution. Everyone has the error in common, everyone has had to learn that every error hides a great truth, there is also Giordano Bruno who, as a philosopher rather than a scientist, had gone much further than anyone else. It is a show in verse and in prose in which the verses look like prose and the prose looks like in verse.

In the Messenger of the Stars by F. Niccolini it says:

“And here, climbing one on the shoulders of the other, far away we know how to look and see, with a more than human eye.

Aristotle is right, not even Ptolemy is wrong: it is not true that whoever came first is a fool ”.

In “The code of flight” Leonardo imagines and creates futuristic machines that seem magical and “teaches not to be afraid to fly”. What does it mean?

Leonardo wanted to build a machine to make men fly! This is true! In short, Leonardo in the eyes of most was a strange man, a mixture between a madman and a scientist, capable of ideal outbursts such as that of making men fly but not born from an imaginative illusion … on the contrary! They were born from a sense of concreteness that was formed in him as a child, precisely from the observation of natural phenomena … here, we can say that Leonardo brought dreams to earth! But to make a dream come true, first of all we have to accept mistakes, imperfections, accept the idea of ​​making mistakes and starting over each time …

“Like man, if he does not balance he cannot walk … so, if he is afraid of falling, he can never fly …”

I quote Plotinus:

But there is a third kind of divine men,
provided with a better temper
and a more penetrating sight.
They, in a certain way,
as a result of their insight,
they see the splendor from above
and rise there,
overcoming the clouds and the darkness of the world
to settle there
watching from those heights
all earthly things
enjoying at the same time
of that authentic and familiar place
like a man who,
after a long wandering
finally arrives in his homeland
governed by good laws.

“The universe is a mattress” uses poetry to make us fall in love with (and understand) science. Why is it important to ask questions even when grown-ups?

“The universe is a mattress” is a beautiful experiment. With the author Francesco Niccolini we try to tell the story of Time from the god Cronus to Einstein …

There is something in common between myth and science… both, seen from a distance, seem understandable, but if you get closer you begin to lose yourself more and more until you realize that, in order not to get lost, you have to change your way of thinking, understanding, reasoning and speaking, often to explain the physics we need poetry, a formula itself is poetry… that’s it myth and science are two doors to another dimension where by dint of asking us questions, answers begin to arrive without even asking the question anymore …

In certain dimensions of science and myth we find ourselves faced with the paradox of the sentence of the Danish physicist N. Bhor: “There are two types of truths: simple ones whose opposite is a lie and complex truths whose opposite is yet another truth.”

The trilogy of the Compagnia del Sole

Company of the Sun, The messenger of the stars (Ph Laila Pozzo)

Tuesday 23rd Augustat 20.30, will be on stage The code of flight, by and with Flavio Albanesemade with the artistic collaboration of Marinella Anaclerio, show focused on the creation of the “flying machine”, an invention that Leonardo da Vinci, the genius of the Renaissance, had developed starting from the famous “Code on the Flight of Birds”. The spectators will know the history, humanity and above all the way of thinking of a multifaceted and highly original genius who is the symbol of our Renaissance. The absolute protagonist is curiosity, man’s restless tension towards discovery, the incredible human capacity to go beyond the limits that nature seems to impose on us.

Wednesday 24th Augustat 20.30, it will be the turn of The messenger of the starsshow written by Francesco Niccoliniinterpreted by Flavio Albanese and directed by Marinella Anaclerio, in co-production with the Fondazione Teatro Ragazzi e Giovani Onlus, Accademia Perduta / Romagna Teatri and the patronage of INAF – National Institute of Astrophysics. Between surreal rhymes, Astolfoone of the magical protagonists of the Orlando Furioso will meet Galileo, Copernicus, Kepler, Newton and other great scientists of the past who will reveal the mysteries of knowledge, between reason, madness, doubts and errors: a series of adventures and surprises that will lead him to understand how complicated and fascinating the path of understanding, freedom of thought and science is .

Thursday 25th Augustat 20.30, the science trilogy of the Compagnia del Sole ends with the winning show of Eolo Award 2018: The universe is a mattress written by Francesco Niccolinidirected and performed by Flavio Albanese with the artistic collaboration and the lights of Marinella Anaclerio. A show that fascinates an audience of all ages by combining great themes of science and philosophy with a curious and research approach. A journey in four chapters in the history of time, of myth through the most important scientific and philosophical discoveries in the history of humanity. The universe is a mattress allows the public of adults and children to ask themselves the same questions that the greatest philosophers and scientists have asked themselves over the centuries. Simple but very important questions: perhaps time does not exist, as perhaps there are no gods, but it is equally true that there are all the things we believe in.

Astrophysics laboratories

Each appointment is anticipated by a theater and science laboratory and from one lesson on the topic curated by the physicist Marco Giliberti of the University of Milan (7.30 pm, at the Casa di Pulcinella).

The appointments are part of the program of the “Adriatic Happiness” Festival conceived and directed by Granteatrino House of Pulcinellaamong the winners of the competition “The two Bari” promoted by the Department of Culture of the Municipality of Bari and financed by the Entertainment Directorate of the Ministry of Culture (MiC) for the realization of live entertainment activities in the peripheral areas of the city; a rich review of shows and workshops to introduce the public to artists who have traced an indispensable and unforgettable path in their artistic path in puppetry and theater for children.

Read our interview with Paolo Comentaleartistic director of Felicità Adriatica In Bari the ‘Felicità Adriatica’ transforms puppetry into science and wonder

Trilogy of science and theater with the Compagnia del Sole in Bari: ‘In Nature you can only try to understand’