Alessio Maria Romano

Bye Bye

“Nothing has changed.
Except perhaps for the ways, the ceremonies, the dances.
But the movement of the hands protecting one’s head Is still the same.”

– Wislawa Szimborska.
and Choreography: Alessio Maria Romano
By and With: Ornella Balestra, Filippo Porro, Andrea Rizzo, Valerie Tameu, Isacco Venturini
Dramaturgy: Linda Dalisi e AMR
Lighting Design: Matteo Crespi
Music and Sound Design: Riccardo Di Gianni
Costumes: Giada Masi
The clothes of the two dancers are by Salvatore Piccione
Choreographer’s Assistant and Understudy: Riccardo Micheletti
Management: Eleonora Cotugno
Production: LAC Lugano arte e cultura.
Co-Production: Torinodanza Festival / Turin’s Teatro Stabile – Teatro nazionale.

Bye Bye is born out of what I consider to be a gift: a request, from Theatre Biennial’s director Antonio Latella, to explore the theme of censorship and how this may relate to me.

Bye Bye is an ironic goodbye to everything one should be, and to everything one would like to be.

It is a farewell to everything and everyone: what comes after has not yet been discovered, nor desired. Do we still dare to desire, in spite of all the information and the restrictions that affect our choices?

Bye Bye is a memory, a collection of images, sounds and movements. Bye Bye is a point of view that crystallises the complex concept of censorship by looking at the simple absence that censorship causes and which determines the impossibility for someone to continue expressing themselves.

Censorship becomes an instrument with which holes and hollows are built into our existence. Bye Bye is a game where the participants must find what is missing. It is a unique coreographic system that transforms according to its own freedom. In our research we did not tell stories about censorship by showing the censors’ tools, and we may have some times given up on telling stories about it. In our investigation, we have simply tried to ask some questions of ourselves and, metaphorically, of everyone. This work is a collective collaboration, of which I and dramaturg Linda Dalisi have simply put the pieces together. It is made up of fragments that portray different possibilities, but that are denied any form of completeness, like all those books, films, shows, paintings and ideas which were denied the right to be complete because of censorship. Where is the logic to explain this terrible mutilation? Where does this terrible power originate?

Bye Bye is a concert in which the music is played by five performers: Ornella Balestra, Filippo Porro, Andrea Rizzo, Valerie Tameu e Isacco Venturini who, together with the whole technical and creative team have shared their stories and their movements in an act of choice and of remembrance. Bye Bye is a tribute to all those women and men who were hidden and eliminated by whatever power was in charge, whose lives were pierced in the name of some idea of “justice.” It is a concert for all of us, as we desperately seek to fill our void and to build.

Bye Bye is a complex work, as complex as only a dream, a desire, a hope can be, a hope where one’s body, and the other’s body are like a shared space from which one can start, or maybe start again.

Alessio Maria Romano

There is a proteiform monster that escapes questions and that stretches its tentacles across time, space, languages, shapes, themes, behaviours, consequences, objectives, functionality. I will not say its name. The rules of the game are not the same in different points of this constellation, and maybe the game is not the same either. We are not in front of a game. It is not about justice, nor its negation. But on the other hand, stretching this monster’s action range would mean to trivialise it, and no one wants to trivialise such torment in man’s destiny. What does it leave behind? Hard to say, but one might try a list: burns, tears, black, dismay, incredulity, defeat, rage, reaction. No, it is actually impossible to make a list: it would be the list of the history of the world.
One day, that monster meets five beings, or rather, five beings collide with its scaly abdomen, and look up at it, from down below. Some clench their fist, in an act of defiance. Some jump up to its ear and whisper war spells. Some fall, only to stand up again. Stand up again – but how? Making a team and inventing a language becomes a possible way out. Getting to know the enemy so that it may be confronted. And after studying, going on stage. The last resource the five beings have is a code with which they can pass information: pretending to say one thing, while in fact saying another. There is always something one cannot say: “It is not that I do not remember it, it is that I cannot say it.”
The guitar, moving in the breeze, signals the charge, and the five advance toward their destiny, which slowly comes to look like a slice of Swiss cheese in a sandwich.
Light marks an imperceptible “I” on the floor.
One more time, the mantra says there is one more chance. They start again.
Linda Dalisi