A play written and performed by DARIO D’AMBROSI

At Wilton’s we have always wanted to represent more the people who are often marginalised in society, but often our work never makes it into the public arena. When we met Dario D’ambrosi it was impossible not to fall in love with his charismatic personality and the wonderful work he does. There was a small gap in his diary and we are very proud to be importing this mini festival championing Dario’s work.

Dario D’Ambrosi is one of Italy’s leading performance artists and founder of the theatrical school for mentally ill people called teatro patologico. He comes to London for the first time bringing to Wilton’s his classic one-man show Frustration (Frustra-Azioni). Based on a true story from 1920, it depicts the obsessed schizophrenic personality of a butcher who imagines himself a male cow, wears a minotaur mask, and pursues offbeat bovine erotic fantasies!

Performed in English and Italian, this short play is so explicit in its pantomime that the foreign-language portions are completely understandable.

A trilogy of his best films follow the performances successively each evening, Dario will be hosting a Q and A after his final performance on Saturday 10th February and is open to discussions regarding his own work and managing his theatre company in Rome. There will be a short interval after the performance so the stage area can be converted into a cinema on the screening nights.

Tickets: https://www.wiltons.org.uk/listings/frustration.html


Wednesday 8th Feb

7.30pm Performance: Frustration (50mins)
8.45pm Screening: Il Ronzio Delle Mosche – “The Buzzing of Flies” (80mins)

Thursday 9th Feb

7.30pm Performance: Frustration (50mins)
8.45pm Screening: I.N.R.I. – “A modern vision of Jesus” – (80mins)

Friday 10th Feb

7.30pm Performance: Frustration (50mins)
8.45pm Screening L’uomo Gallo – “Days of Antonio” – (80 mins)

Saturday 11th Feb

7.30pm Performance: Frustration (50mins)
8.30pm Post Show Q and A with Dario D’ambrosi

The performances are just £10, the screenings are free.

“Any piece by Mr. D’Ambrosi is about each member of the audience. A viewer who surrenders disbelief for a moment will be carried away in an unimaginable world of chaos, wit, bewilderment” DJR Bruckner, New York Times

Il Ronzio Delle Mosche – “The Buzzing of Flies”

This is the first film Dario D’ambrosi directed in 2003. A team of doctors and scientists are working on a new ambitious project: to bring madness back to the world in order to fight boredom and depression.

They capture the last three madmen left: Franci, a manqué painter, Matteo, who lives in a world of his own, and Felice, a sweet, sensitive individual who plays the piano. The experiment begins. The three people are first observed, then in a bizarre plot, are subjected to therapy that brings them back to their original daily life, from which their madness is presumed to have started.
To staff a “play therapy,” actors are recruited, among them Dr. Natalia (Greta Scacchi) of the medical team. She is the only one who feels for the madmen and becomes their accomplice. Together, she and the madmen plan an escape, to bring joy and cheerfulness back to this grey, serious world. This Hera International film was produced by Gianfranco Piccioli.

I.N.R.I. “A modern vision of Jesus”

Jesus is living as a tramp in a contemporary and frenetic New York City. It is not only the busy New York city of Wall Street but also the dark one of ill-fame lanes. It is the New York City of skyscrapers but above all the New York City of the LaMama theatre Cafè. And it is exactly in this theatre of the East Village that Jesus is going to pretend to be an actor to be able to communicate his word without running the risk of being mistaken for a madman and even being shut in the Queens mental hospital. It is for this reason that, at dawn, he calls the young and beloved Peter to tell him his intent to use the stage to start again performing miracles in this distracted and cynical world.

The news reach also the drug addicted and wicked Judas who, for a dose of heroin, informs the Jewish Caifa, the pitiless manager in care of Wall Street. So, the tragic and violent event of the Passion is recreated in a theatre of New York by turning the stage into an immediate and real metaphor of sorrow and sacrifices made by Jesus on behalf of the goodness of mankind.

L’uomo Gallo – “Days of Antonio”

This film is based on the horrific true story of a disabled child who was kept all his life locked away in a chicken coop just outside Milan in the early 20th century. “L’uomo Gallo” begins when the unfortunate young man (Antonio) is taken to a psychiatric hospital, where he naturally discovers a hard truth: he is not an animal and at the same time, he is not able to remake his life. Antonio is thrust into a strange, desperate universe of funny characters and marginalized groups, each with psychotic symptoms but also a huge amount of heart.

Antonio makes friends with his roommate Giacomo, who is manic about order and cleanliness. Between them blossoms a relationship made up of silences and small gestures of solidarity. They, like their fellow patients (to whom they are rebelliously uplifting), must adapt to life under the care of a nurse and a doctor whose icy and authoritarian ways hide deep imbalances that are more serious and dangerous than that those experienced by their patients.

For more information about Teatro Patalogico please see:

Booking Information

Dates: Wednesday 8th, Thursday 9th, Friday 10th, Saturday 11th February
Times: 7:30pm
Prices: £10