“Declaration” by Gianni Montalto

A one person, 15 minute play, which uses the words of a hand written love letter, to explore the writer’s back-story, in 1940’s post-war Europe . Spoken word in Italian, with English translation by Dr Bridig Maher in the program. Direction by Sharon Thompson.

A hand written letter is folded neatly into a small rectangle and slipped into a pocket of my father’s wallet. The wallet becomes a keepsake after his death. Seventy years after the letter was written, I find it while sorting my mother’s things after she passes away and come across the wallet.

The letter is frank. Addressed to a woman. A young man writes in Italian of his love, and longing for her acquiescence.

Why is this letter in my father’s wallet? Who was the woman?

Exploring the letter as prose, one asks whether mirth was intended, not withstanding the young man’s sincerity. As performance, it leans towards the theatrical, inviting the audience to indulge in his gentle politeness and honesty, and at times, bold emotional outbursts.

Examining and translating the words from Italian to English, one is struck by the quite poetic but at times rather colloquial style.

Friday 15 June. Venue : ‘No Vacancy’ art space, the Atrium, Fed Square.


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