The Mountain Giants and Other Plays

The Mountain Giants and Other Plays

The Mountain Giants and Other Plays

The Mountain Giants and Other Plays

Excerpt

I am speaking of Luigi Pirandello. And I am speaking of him in a place well suited to his personality--in the university of the mind. I feel no hesitation, for twenty years after his death he is more alive than ever.

At this very moment he is close by me. He will speak himself, not through the lips of his characters. He will speak in his own words of his anxieties, his torments, his joys, the few joys that he knew. Our correspondence covers ten years--from 1926 to 1936, a few days before his death.

But here he is.

We first find the Master in Rome, during a period of rest away from the cares of his company of the Odescalchi Theatre.

The company had behind it the triumphs of London, Paris, German-speaking Switzerland, Berlin, and other important German cities; the countless honors and festivities which everywhere had greeted Luigi Pirandello. Bonn, where he studied as a young man, had received him in his mature success with what might almost be called maternal love. Upon our return to Italy, however, the most bitter disappointment awaited us. Because of delays in the repayment of debts contracted for the rebuilding of the Odescalchi Theatre, which the government had promised to underwrite, the Theatre had to be closed. It was August, 1926. We were without our own theatre. The best and noblest undertaking which, in his youthful enthusiasm and generosity, through his own personal intervention, Luigi Pirandello had given to our country and to us actors was on the verge of failure.

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