Antichi Maestri

Duration: 80 minutes without interval

An elderly man enters the Bordone Hall at the Kunsthistorisches art Museum in Vienna. He sits down and begins to study the celebrated Portrait of a white-bearded man by Tintoretto. It is a ritual that has been taking place every two days for more than thirty years, ever since his wife died. The man is Reger, a very famous musicologist. There are two other men in the room with him: the attendant Irrsigler, who is devoted to him, and a younger man, Atzbacher, who remains standing on the threshold. An exchange of glances commences. Reger, focuses his attention entirely on the painting, in search of defects in the masterpiece, because “perfection is impossible to stand”, Atzbacher in turn observes the man scrutinising the painting, while the attendant examines them both.
Federico Tiezzi writes in the director’s notes: “In the novel, the full title of which is Old masters: a comedy, in which the subtitle is not to be overlooked, Bernhard - with exhilarating lucubration and cynical abuse against the world of art, the city of Vienna and its inhabitants, sets in motion a ferocious divertissement which examines a number of points of view both farcical and pessimistic of that which the Austrian writer considers to be a symbol of hypocrisy par excellence: human beings”.

The final work in an ideal trilogy of arts, composed of The loser (1983), set in the world of music, and Woodcutters (1984), which examines the dramatic arts, Old masters, published in 1985, is dedicated to the figurative arts and is seen as one of the last and most extraordinary examples of Thomas Bernhard’s narrative.

In the adaptation for the stage by Fabrizio Sinisi, Federico Tiezzi transforms the story into a veritable theatrical study of the function of art, the limitations of beauty, the neurosis of modernity, the anguish of solitude, and the desperation of marginality.

Piccolo Teatro Studio Melato
from 16 to 21 March 2021
Antichi Maestri
based on the novel "Alte Meister" ("Old masters") by Thomas Bernhard
translated by Anna Ruchat
dramaturgy by Fabrizio Sinisi
directed by Federico Tiezzi
with Alessandro Burzotta, Martino D’Amico and Sandro Lombardi
sets and costumes by Gregorio Zurla, lighting by Gianni Pollini
assistant director Giovanni Scandella
a Compagnia Lombardi - Tiezzi / Associazione Teatrale Pistoiese Centro di Produzione Teatrale production
in collaboration with Napoli Teatro Festival Italia

Stalls full price € 33
Balcony full price € 26

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You may take your seat during any intervals.
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Safety measures for access to performances

  • In order to prevent queues and crowding, we invite spectators to arrive at the venue for the show in advance of the scheduled start time.
  • For access face masks must be worn (or an alternative form of protection approved by the Lombardy Region. Non-medical masks are prohibited). The face mask must be worn for the entire duration of the play. “Courtesy” face masks will be available for spectators who do not have suitable protection. Hands must be sanitised via the dedicated dispensers.
  • Personnel at the entrance will have dedicated thermal scanners for measuring temperature. Spectators with a body temperature equal to or higher than 37.5°C will not be granted access.
  • seats assigned guarantee respect for regulations regarding interpersonal distancing.
  • Spectators are kindly requested to follow the instructions provided by the ushers as well as via audio and visual indications in the venue.


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tel. +39 02.72.333.216