The ancient Carnival of Sciacca

An allegorical figure during the Carnival parade, Sciacca, Sicily. Copyright: feel / 123RF Stock Photo courtesy l’Italo Americano. Article by Teresa di Fresco http://www.italoamericano.org/story/2016-2-3/sciacca-carnival

Pulcinella was going to Biella, sitting on a carriage, and if the horse had been attached, then certainly by this time would have arrived.
Pulcinella was going to Turin, sitting on a horse, and if the horse had not been made of wood, he would have gone to Turin and to Collegno as well.

Among the best known and most important writers of Italy was Gianni Rodari, a master of children’s literature who in this rhyme from "The Travels of Pulcinella", the protagonist is Pulcinella, a carnival mask among the most famous and most poetic that Italy has ever celebrated, not only in the carnival parades of floats, but also in some theatrical literature.

It seems, however, that for the past several years, the stars of the floats are no longer masked as Pulcinella (Punch), Arlecchino (Harlequin), Colombina, Pantalone, Tartaglia, Scaramuccia (Scaramouche), Balanzone, Rugantino, Meo Patacca, etc… People tend to want to satirize more contemporary characters.

But in some towns, as in Sciacca, in the province of Agrigento, the tradition is still alive and not only does it continue to survive but it is the inevitable Carnival mask of Peppe Nappa. Also this year, which celebrates the 116th edition, it will be among the floats during the performance, "Here comes the party." Groups of masked people and music will make up the choreography and the soundtrack of the most transgressive festival of the year.

Read full article by Teresa di Fresco published on February 4, 2016 by l’Italo Americano: http://www.italoamericano.org/story/2016-2-3/sciacca-carnival

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