Clippings from a Biography
Notes from an open conversation and blurred pictures of a stable nomad director might tell - though just as clippings in a scrapbook - the personal and professional journey of theatre director Sergio Maifredi. Accurate, determined and gifted with both rational thinking and a crystal clear imagination, Sergio Maifredi has been at work for more than three decades looking for and then staging brand new plays and original plays with a classical nature. From the early days to the research work in Iceland, along the Bergman’s plays (Isbjorg, Nara livet known as So Close to Life or Brink of Life, Signorina Giulia, Io sono il Maestro), or the German ones (Mercedes by Thomas Brash, Die arabische Nacht and Die Frau von früher by Roland Schimmelpfennig), the long collaboration with Tonino Conte at Teatro della Tosse and the open-air huge theatre productions in unusual locations his directing experience stretches a long way in many different directions.
Then, all of a sudden, the time was ripe for Maifredi to become a nomad, a wanderer. And theatre an essential idea, an organizational paradigm, a codebreaking technique to disrupt expectations, patterns, schemes and enable to work on a new order of words, performances and productions. First there was absolute freedom with Teatri Possibili Liguria - lately renamed Teatro Pubblico Ligure – where the essence of directing, that is putting together words and actors, was about translating new ideas into new formats such as Conversations on Representation - a series of conferences; I Frantoi dell’Arte - “squeezing ideas like oil from olives”; Festival degli Scali a mare - theatre performances on small harbours by the seaside; Grock Festival (Imperia) - to celebrate Grock the clown; readings from Homer’s Odyssey in amazing natural locations by actors turned into fascinating and inspiring storytellers.
As a nomad Sergio Maifredi has been operating across time and space and yet always focused and aiming at clear goals carved in stones or weaved in precise if tangled webs of relationships, meetings, agreements spread on a diary unashamed to say Rome on Monday, Bari on Tuesday, Poznań on Friday and Genoa on Sunday. This was the time he spent in Poland as Resident Director at Teatr Nowy, staging works by Pirandello, Goldoni and Fellini and learning about a brand new theatre world and a culture through a first-hand experience with a Polish theatre company. This was the time he designed and curated two art exhibitions around the theatre as seen from quite different perspectives: Theatre in a poster / Tutto il teatro in un manifesto. Poland 1989-2009 (Palazzo Ducale, 2009) and Yves Klein. Judo and Theatre - Body and Vision (Palazzo Ducale, 2012) around Yves Klein’s blue and him as an artist and a man.
As a nomad, Sergio Maifredi has been into a lot more and elsewhere too: i.e. four years in Barletta as Artistic Director at Teatro Curci / Curci’s Theatre (Puglia) and five years working as Executive Director at Teatro Vittoria in Rome.