Antonio Taormina, Cristina Valenti

The Italian way to theatre in prison

  • Abstract

Informations and abstract

Keywords: Cultural Inclusion; Social Participation; Theatre Research and Experimentation; Inter-Institutional Cooperation; National and Local Networks; Funding Streams; Professional Training; Desistance Rates.

The article provides an overview of Prison Theatre in Italy, an artistic form which in the past twenty years has gradually gained notoriety and prestige thanks to the work carried out by theatre directors such as Armando Punzo at the Carcere di Volterra or Fabio Cavalli at the Carcere di Rebibbia in Rome, who gave life to outstanding productions and initiatives, and drew the attention of important movie directors. In several cases, Italian prisons have in fact become places of groundbreaking cultural production and experimentation. The authors trace an historical overview of Prison Theatre since its origins in the late 1980s, outline the most recent examples of inter-institutional cooperation between different areas of public administration and levels of government, and illustrate the protocols and coordination bodies promoted by national and local authorities, prisons and theatre operators. Finally, the need for more research and evaluation, as well as for the training of professional profiles needed to work in prisons, are also considered.

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