New York

Il Piccolo Teatro di Milano

Brooklyn Academy of Music (BAM) | Peter Jay Sharp Building

As staged by revered Italian director Giorgio Strehler, Luigi Pirandello’s The Mountain Giants, 1936, has the impeccable styling of an Italian movie from the ’60s. The actors in Strehler’s company, II Piccolo Teatro di Milano, breeze across the stage in elegantly cut dresses and summer suits, gesturing broadly. Their intonation reflects the Italian love affair with exaggeration, captured with such surreal humor by masterful filmmakers such as Federico Fellini and Michelangelo Antonioni. Indeed, Strehler’s production is a rich period piece, a reminder to American audiences of the visual splendor and philosophical depth that characterized the theater of a bygone time.

Strehler identifies so passionately with the playwright’s overall theme—“the tragedy of poetry in this brutal world”—that he has staged The Mountain Giants twice before, in 1947 and 1966. Though Strehler believes Pirandello’s

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