“I’m still incredulous: being at the top of the world theater is really unexpected”. Stefano Massini is excited, the writer and playwright who triumphed at the Tony Awards last night on Broadway, winning the award for the best play with Lehman Trilogy, the three-act play dedicated to the 150-year-old saga of a family that contributed to the crisis and growth of the Wall Street system, which also won the awards for best leading actor in a play (Simon Russell Beale), best director (Sam Mendes), best set design (Es Devlin), best lighting design to (Jon Clark). “It is true – Massini explains to ANSA – that we had obtained eight nominations, but if by many observers the recognition of Mendes’ direction and the actors was taken for granted, it was instead considered impossible that in the ‘best play’ category at 75 / he edition of the Oscars of the American theater would win a ‘foreigner’, that an ‘immigrant playwright’ would get on the podium that belonged to Arthur Miller or Tennessee Williams. It was incredible to be among the stars last night, a few steps away from me. ‘they were Samuel Jackson, Hugh Jackman, Billy Cristal, legendary names that I normally see at the cinema or on TV. And so winning the Tony was beyond all imagination for me: it is not false modesty, but pure truth. already four years ago, at the Laurence Olivier awards, the highest recognition of English theater, my victory was excluded and there was actually no recognition, also because Lehman Trilogy is a piece written in a very particular way, with an andamen to ballad “. A powerful and international story: “The thing that struck me last night, coming out of Radio City Hall among thousands of people, on Sixth Avenue, was a Puerto Rican boy, with glasses, flanked by his father, who recognized me and he said to me: I will do everything to enroll in economics after seeing Lehman. He made an incredible effect on me. After all, the executives of Wall Street after seeing the opera debut on Broadway wanted the three actors they went in stage clothes to open a trading session on the New York Stock Exchange: and so it was, they went and rang the famous bell. Proof of the fact that this story has entered the collective imagination “. Overwhelmed by this night by messages of good wishes and congratulations (“Among the many, I was very pleased with that of Claudia Mori and Adriano Celentano”), Massini is keen to remember Luca Ronconi: the Italian debut of Lehman Trilogy took place at the Piccolo Teatro di Milan in 2015, as the last project of the great director. “For me, Tony is on the same level as that time when, sitting on a sofa, Ronconi, my teacher, told me: you wrote a sensational work, I’ll do something about it”. Symbolically, a circle closes: “In 2020 Lehman Trilogy here and New York was on the bill in March 2020: he had time to go on stage for the five premieres, then the lockdown was triggered. When Broadway reopened, in September 2021, it was the first opera to be performed, almost a symbol of the resilience of the theater after the covid “. And the work will become a TV series produced by Domenico Procacci for Fandango and by Lorenzo Mieli for The Apartment Pictures, a company of the Fremantle group, the same team that brought the RAI-HBO series of the Genial Friend to international success. Massini is involved (“but I can’t say anything”) and the playwright is working on a new work, “Manhattan Project, which with the epic, narrative and Judaic-soaked passage of Lehman Trilogy will tell the birth of the atomic bomb”.
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