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Nancy, world capital of Commedia dell’Arte 2024

More than 60 shows in 4 days

A festive, popular, cultural event

After Philadelphia, Sydney, Hong Kong, Barcelona … Nancy, world capital of Commedia dell’Arte 2024! 67 shows, most of them free, and 24 companies will take over the streets of the Greater Nancy Metropolis from 21 to 25 February for the World Commedia dell’Arte Days.

The City of Nancy has been officially designated “world capital of Commedia Dell’Arte” for 2024 under the patronage of the French National Commission for UNESCO. The greatest characters from Commedia dell’Arte will be in attendance.

Ferruccio Soleri, aged 94, will be the patron of the World Commedia dell’Arte Days in Nancy! A true giant in Italy and even more so in the world of Commedia dell’Arte, he played the role of Harlequin, to great acclaim, at the Piccolo Teatro in Milan for … 50 years! This is a record unrivalled in the world of theatre (it even appears in the Guinness Book of Records).

The reception for this event celebrates three anniversaries:

  •  2024 will be the 60th anniversary of the twinning that links Nancy to Padua. As such, these World Days will be a real cultural event which will help celebrate this anniversary and bring these two cities closer together based on shared Culture, Art and History.
  • The Balli and Bohemians series, engraved by Jacques Callot, are 400 years old! The Balli were produced and published in 1622 and the Bohemians in 1623-1624.
  • In 2023, Nancy celebrates the 40th anniversary of the UNESCO World Heritage listing of its 18th-century ensemble (Place Stanislas, Place de la Carrière, Place d’Alliance). The start of Commedia dell’Arte dates back to the 16th century, but the continuity of the History told about Nancy, the link with Commedia and the place of women in the arts world takes us up to the 18th century.

The Metropolis REALLY COMES ALIVE

19 towns will host Commedia shows in their markets (as in the Middle Ages), in their Leisure Centres (for children) or in the form of theatre breakfasts (in front of the birthplace of Jacques Callot in Houdemont, in front of the Renaissance Visconti facade, in Jarville…).

Place Stanislas, Nancy Town Hall, the Museum of Fine Arts, Arc Héré and Place de la Carrière will provide the focal point for the majority of shows, workshops, conferences, exhibitions, artist performances etc. But other places will also host shows: the Metropolitan Tourist Office, University of Lorraine, MJC Lillebonne, Théâtre du Cercle du Travail, Caméo cinema…

In addition to the shows, there will also be exhibitions, workshops, courses, meetings with personalities, performances:

Jacques Callot and the performing arts exhibition from 15 February to 6 May 2024 at the Museum of Fine Arts in Nancy (free access on 24 and 25 February)
“Callot en grand” exhibition under Arc Héré from 15 February to 6 May 2024
• Exhibition of 150 to 200 Commedia masks by Stefano Perocco di Meduna, President of the Union des facteurs de masque de France, in the Péristyle of Nancy Town Hall throughout the World Mask Days.
MJC Lillebonne will offer tours of its engraving workshop, presentations, links with the work of Jacques Callot and Commedia dell’Arte

The Metropolitan Tourist Office will also be joining the party.

During this event, we will:

invite you to discover costumes of Commedia dell’Arte characters and masks exhibited by the International Academy of Performing Arts of Versailles in our public reception area
put on an exhibition of several decorative panels representing characters from Commedia dell’Arte created by Rita Tataï from Atelier de la Colombe, a renowned costume designer, based on illustrations by Maurice Sand. Rita Tataï will be present on 21, 22, 24 and 25 February
invite you to meet Clémence Gueib for a mask demonstration with a display of her textile art work on Friday 23 February
organise “meet the company” events on Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday. A theatre company will come and meet the public at the Metropolitan Tourist Office for a quarter of an hour
arrange “Jacques Callot, portrait in two voices” costumed tours on Wednesday 21 and Saturday 24 February at 2.00pm, and “In the footsteps of Jacques Callot, from Nancy to Italy” guided tours on Thursday 22, Friday 23 and Sunday 25 February at 2.30pm. Information and registration required at visites.nancy-tourisme.fr (in French)

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