In the bat of an eye. Lightning.I caught Arturo Brachetti on television last night,on the uber-popular Quebec talk show “Tous le Monde en Parle” hosted by Guy Lepage.As circumstances had it, Brachetti was sitting beside a priest and he really had a go at the Catholic church’s right wing swing, the lack of democracy and those elements in the Vatican which are most alienating to many all expressed with an articulate line of reasoning. Brachetti is a fast-change artist, a revival of Leopoldo Fregoli that has touches of dada and the avant-garde combined with a more figurative tradition, a bit camp and at times populist, but it holds together as something engaging as art and as political expression.There is a chord struck of Italian neo-realismo behind the techno-flash of the show.
It was said that making childlike art was an objective of avant-garde art. That is, only when the avant-garde artist finds the child in himself than he can be truly avant-garde. Picasso apparently once said took him a lifetime to learn how to paint like a child, which meant art approximating the origins of life and thus invoking some of that originality. Brachetti is more of a traditionalist, even slightly sentimental, a kind of magical Marc Chagall of performance art; the same antipathy of the nihilistic and what Picasso would call his art “the sum of destructions.”
From an interview. ( see link at end): One of your fans once said: “When you watch a performance by Arturo you close your eyes and dream, then you open them and the dream is still there.,” What’s behind the show ‘Change’?
The show applies to a sentiment of wonder embedded in our childhood, a magical world that as we grow older is taken over by our jobs, work routines, time tables, statistics … and we neglect the child inside us. With my show I call on that child. There is an Italian poet by the name of Giovanni Pascoli who makes reference to the little child who lives in our heart who keeps us young forever. Federico Fellini too, in his film 8 ½, says I am forty in my body but 8 ½ in my mind. It is this kind of innocence, joi de vivre, mixed with irrationality that takes the audience to their childhood and brings back sweet memories….
…You are a great Theatre Artisan: psychology, techniques and emotions are the basis of every show that, invariably, expresses the utmost of your artistic abilities. Is this a gift, a challenge or is it a social vengeance?
It’s a mixture of everything. I was a very shy boy – small, skinny and spotty – everyone laughed at. The fact that I wasn’t any good at football didn’t help matters: in Italy it’s shameful if a boy can’t play soccer. So, maybe I matured a kind of social revenge. Thanks God I met a priest when I was thirteen who taught me magic tricks. Everyone was so surprised of how good I was at it. But I was still very shy, so I went on stage wearing costumes, which meant I wasn’t shy anymore. After that point my shows were almost a social revenge for the humiliations I suffered as young boy. I also learned that my stage presence could play on people’s emotions, making them laugh, cry or wonder. Being able to provoke emotions even in people that would otherwise be bored was always a great pleasure.
When I am on stage I go through some kind of psychodrama, I perform 80 characters non-stop. I can become whatever I want: man, woman, animal … thing. I take the audience on a magical journey, at the end of which they are grateful, they applaud and cheer…
…Without the phenomenon Brachetti, the art of transformation would have died with Leopoldo Fregoli in 1936. In fact, you had to invent systems because no information existed about it. Do you think that one day you will pass on this legacy to a successor?
Ever since I started out as a magician, I have had people copying me, but they can only manage a five-minute act at the local circus. They lack cultural meaning. For example, a good painter d
inspiration from his senses to make a representation on his canvas. A copier on the other hand, can copy the hardware, but can never copy the software, the emotions. However, I am sure that in a few years time there will be a young artist who will deserve to be on stage and to be helped along the way to reach the top. But, not right now … please allow me to work for at least another ten years!…
…Your performance also expresses a lot of innocence: a Peter Pan whom never tires of making people laugh, young and old. What does irritate Arturo Brachetti off stage?
There are a number of things that make me angry. For example something that upsets me is when untalented people get to places only because of powerful connections. I am talking about people that have no culture but yet have the power to decide who will or will not progress in life. – Unprofessional people in jobs they can’t manage make me angry….Read More:http://www.accademiapulia.org/en/members/arturo-brachetti-205.html