Mercantia - Festival internazionale del Quarto teatro

Mercantia 2020 - La Fabbrica Dei Sogni

"… and we must do our best to grow great trees of peace and gardens of happiness."Daisaku Ikeda

Lacking and desire, as W. Propp explains in “Morphology of the tale”, are functions present in every fairy tale told around the world! From dreams and desires come beautiful things, the many projects that nourish our life, but if these same dreams and desires lack sophistication, then they can draw out the darkness of life and much worse besides ...

Dreams come in different forms: those that remain mere dreams... and those that sometimes sprout legs!

Some people dream with their eyes wide open, others only when they sleep, painting their nights with fanciful visions of meadows, sunsets, butterflies...or filling them with fretful scenes (of Pinocchio chased through the night by two assassins...), in short some people need to stop dreaming and get moving while others should stop and give it a go!

Dreaming is part of the routine here at Mercantia, something we’ve always done and will continue to do, year after year, although each time is always like the first!

Everything is light and shadow (good and evil), the constant duality of the opportunities of life.

Wars are also born of the dream-need for power and supremacy, a dark and authoritarian desire to crush those we consider our enemies.

“I have a dream” Martin Luther King said, and the most beautiful dream of all should be one of peace, justice, freedom, equality, one in which all peoples living on this earth, all colours and cultures, come together in a joyful harmony of gestures and words, thoughts and actions, growing our very own mini Eden, a paradise for all!

(Use the colours of the rainbow, a meadow of one hundred flowers, billions of stars, millions of animal species and vegetables to create a symphony of forms and diversity. One and the many are mirror images of each other, the reflection of life! Divisions, like standardization, bring pain and suffering. Love, on the other hand, unites, bestows and creates diversity!)

The Dream Factory of Mercantia, was once an artisan workshop, a craft lab, an experience born of a dream (many dreams), of ideals and desires that saw the tiny seedling it once was grow into a tall tree offering shelter and protection to many souls, coining a multiplicity of techniques and genres, becoming the oasis of the Fourth Theatre, a sanctuary for all ages …

Raw materials take shape and grow beautiful in the craft lab, where master educates disciple and disciple becomes master...

Beauty becomes goodness, a shared value, and goodness becomes an asset ... of value to all...

To not progress means to go backwards, to stop dreaming, to come to a halt in a place in which all is formal, all is sterile, lacking energy and wonder.

Mercantia never stops dreaming and when life and dreams get tough, Mercantia gets tougher, tries harder and starts playing...

... this edition also features the European dream of Mysteries and Drolls, a network of shows and reflections on life’s new jesters, the places from whence they came, the new faces and contemporary roles (...bringing to mind a number of charlatans capable of reducing us to tears, of laughter and in other places, also of despair!)

Change awaits you, it can't be ignored, but we will remain faithful to ourselves and to our history in constant motion

I was a child and now I’m old, I was and I remain Alessandro, a physical appearance can change, feelings mutate, but to be is immutable...

Football matches are ever the same, the players change, teams go head to head, you win or lose, it's one against the other...

Our festival unites, it creates neither teams nor faction: I'm supporting in Mercantia!

Our factory of ideas, or better still Mercantia, has been generous with many, our seeds have often reached pastures new and become the roots of new sanctuaries, green spaces for wanderers and pilgrims new!

Our goal has always been to marvel, amaze, amuse, educate, and to forge new ideas and stimuli.

This holds one hundred-fold times more for Mercantia 2020, the mission of which is to welcome and embrace our audience with interactive games of perception, spectacular shows, breath-taking experiences, engaging head and feet ...

We will strive, as far as humanly possible, to change ourselves, but the ancient walls of the village, the streets, the squares and the atmospheres, on all of these we can have little effect.

Our society has become too consumerist, too commercial, we no longer know how to hold onto the intensity of an experience, we change channels, web pages, clothes, shoes, we think nothing of switching men and women, abandoning the children we toiled to create, we consume our woodlands and forests, glaciers and natural resources, we end up rootless, without memory, we lose our humanity, our way of perceiving the world and life.

The most beautiful things are those which remain, which mature over time, the things we remember the taste and flavour of, the things we pass through slowly...

It took millions of years for the first human to form, for the first forms of civilization to emerge, then thousands of years after festivals followed.

Mercantia will put her thirty-three years on show in 2020, but is yet a child, the best has yet to come!

Mercantia is the land of dreams, a night graced by a full moon, a festival of theatre and life, a place of encounters and passions, it's someone who never gives up and keeps on singing their song.

artistic concept by Alessandro Gigli