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HISTORICAL OUTLINE

 

1765

Luigi Lupi I is born in Ferrara

 

1780

Luigi Lupi I leaves his work in a grocery to start theatrical activity and follow Jacoponi’s company.

 

1818

Luigi Lupi marries Jacoponi’s daughter and they move to Turin.

 

1821

Enrico Lupi II is born in Turin.

 

1823

Luigi Lupi founds an indipendent company: he rents a small theatre near San Martiniano Church, in San Francesco d’Assisi road, and presents the marionettes and “Arlecchino’s deeds” to the audience in Turin. On the 19th October, Lupi has his debut with a real comedy, Goldoni’s “La Gastalda Veneziana”.

 

1824

Theatres are closed due to mourning-time for the death of Vittorio Emanuele I. During this time, Luigi Lupi can organize two new shows: “Pigmalione” and “Il trionfo dell’amore” (The Victory of Love). In the company’s repertory many genres are included, from prose to ballet, from opera to cabaret… everything performed by puppets.

 

1828

With the representation of  “La Vestale”, a five-act ballet, Luigi Lupi initiates the tradition of performing in the form of puppet-show the successes from the other theatres in town.

 

1834

King Carlo Alberto decides that each show performed in town, including puppet plays, must be reviewed on “La Gazzetta Piemontese”.

 

1840

Gianduia “steals” Arlecchino’s role in Lupi’s productions. The repertory shifts from plays from Lombardy and Veneto to plays from Piemonte, such as dialectical plays written by Giovanni Toselli (who also founded the Angennes Theatre, a monument of dialectical theatre).

 

1843

Marionettes are built so as to move with increased precision by means of more movable limbs and a more complex net of strings -inspired by Holden’s system-. Debut of  “I fantocci d’Ida Nugai” (The puppets of Ida Nugai -which is the anagram of Gianduia-). Luigi Lupi dies, his place taken by his son Enrico.

 

1846

Luigi Lupi III is born in Turin.

 

1848

Luigi Lupi IV is born in Turin.

 

1863

Enrico Lupi starts travelling around Europe to renew his father’s repertory. He introduces and translates new works from Paris and London; he writes also his own works, achieving a whole repertory of more than thousand scripts; meanwhile, his two sons work in the San Martiniano theatre in Turin.

 

1873

Luigi Lupi V is born.

 

1875

Under Enrico Lupi’s direction, the troupe achieves great fame. Collecting Sales-Bellone troupe’s works -as this troupe was sent away  from its theatre- Lupi’s company acquires a wide repertory that must often face censorship, in most cases due to Gianduia’s sarcastic  wit. Under Enrico’s direction we also find the most proliphic period as for scenery-, marionette- and scene object- production.

 

1876

The burlesque pantomime “From Earth to the Moon” (J. Verne) is represented in Philadelphia, at Kizalfy’s theatre, obtaining great fame.

 

1880

Death of Enrico, Luigi III and Luigi IV leading the troupe.

 

1881

San Martiniano theatre is taken down to make place for future Pietro Micca road.

 

1884

The Lupi family acquires D’Angennes theatre. On 4th October, the theatre starts its new activity with “Le novantanove disgrazie di Gianduia” (Gianduia’s ninety-nine misadventures). “Il ballo Excelsior” (The Excelsior Dance) is also very successful: written by Luigi Manzotti and Giovanni Chiti, the work is a puppet-performed remake of the first great musical in the Umbertinian era.

 

1887

“L’eroe dei due mondi”(The two-worlds hero) pays its homage to Garibaldi and his deeds.

 

1891

The fame of Emilio Salgari and his exotic tales influence Lupi’s theatre too: “Stanlej attraverso l’Africa tenebrosa” is a great success. The D’Angennes  theatre is more and more often referred to as “Gianduia Theatre”.  For ten years the theatre undergoes a deep renewal of marionettes and sceneries. Many artists of the Teatro Regio di Torino (such as Bosio, Gastaldi, Venere, Gheduzzi, Fontana, Provinciali, Recanatini, Morgari, Vacca etc. ) work in this period for the Gianduia Theatre.

 

 

1892

Four centuries after America has been discovered, the troupe presents “Cristoforo Colombo”.

 

1896

The “colonial wave” affects Lupi’s works too: “Dall’Amba Alagi a Macallé” and “La battaglia d’Agordat” try to cheer up the audience for the defeat in Etiopia, celebrating new successes in Eritrea and Somalia.

 

1897

More and more dialectical works in Lupi’s repertory: “Turin ca bugia” and “E ti, asto vedula?” debut this year.

 

1901

“Turin, Paris, Pechin” marks the entry of a new “character” in the world of puppetry: the Car, a very debated theme in chronicles, proves to be a successful issue in theatre too.

 

1906

Luigi Lupi VI born in Turin.

 

1912

”Gianduia a Tripoli” by Luigi Lupi V celebrates the conquest of Libya. Next year, historical events bring “Gianduia nei Balcani”, while “Tuti a ca’ del Diau” (Everybody to the Devil’s House) seems to foresee the tragedy of World War I.

 

1920

“Un gir al torcc” seems to represent ambitions that are common to many people after World War I.

 

1923

“Il mondo sottosopra” (The World’s Upside-down) after October’s Revolution while…

 

1925

“Nerone” talks about “Someone” who’s scaring Italy from his balcony in Rome.

 

1934

To celebrate the fifty years of Gianduia Theatre’s foundation a pamphlet is published: “Nozze d’oro di Gianduia col Teatro di via Principe Amedeo: 1884-1934”.

 

1935

Luigi Lupi VII is born in Turin.

 

1936

Gianduia Theatre is closed down.

 

1946

After the storm of World War II has calmed down, the troupe takes up its activity again. They don’t have a permanent seat, so they work in different theatres in town, such as the Carignano, the Godetti, the Alfieri and the Romano, until they establish a permanent seat in an empty underground hall in via Roma Gallery.

 

1960

The Gianduia Theatre, in S. Teresa road, opens up with the show “Pinocchio”; followed by “Biancaneve e gli otto nani”.

 

1962

“Pollicino” by Luigi Lupi VI opens the sequence of puppet-performed remakes of children fairies and short stories.

 

1963

Franco Lupi VIII is born in Turin.

 

1976

Restoration of the theatre, that has now 280 seats.

 

1978

The Puppet Museum opens in Turin, near Gianduia Theatre. Four rooms of the museum expose material from Lupi’scompany.

 

1982

Renewal of the stage structure where puppets act. This structure has never been renewed until today!

 

1985

“Re Orso” (King Bear) by Arrigo Boito opens a trilogy of great productions (and great successes!). The following year the troupe presents “Pietro Micca” (a remake of a XIX century book) and “Aida”.

 

1990

Alongside puppetry, new theatrical genres and techniques are introduced in the company, such as dance, prose and operetta; the company becomes an important centre for production and promotion of new shows and festivals.

 

1992

“Notti da lupi”: a festival of thriller theatre, takes place in a museum’s room in the form of  café chantant; the audience sits at café tables, “tasting” the show while tasting some typical dishes.

 

1993

Debut of the show “Peter Pan”: written in a more modern language, the style and the techniques undergo a renewal too. The following year “La spada nella roccia” (The Sword in the Rock) is played: both works are written and directed by Franco Lupi VIII.

 

1995

Prose show “La sirenetta” (The Maiden) by Marguerite Yourcenar, directed by Fraco Lupi VIII.

 

1998

The troupe organizes, produces and promotes “In bocca ai lupi”, a festival where shows of different genres (prose, dance, cabaret, etc) leave on tour through different villages and towns in Piemonte.

 

2001

The troupe starts to cooperate with another company, “I fratellini”.

 

2005

Starts the cooperation with the Accademia dell'Arte of Arezzo.