The show – created and played by Filippo Tognazzo, produced by Zelda, professional theatre company, with the collaboration of Fondazione Benetton Studi Ricerche – is dedicated to the villages of Osmače and Brežani, on the plateau above Srebrenica, which were selected by the 2014 International Carlo Scarpa Garden Prize.
The study and care campaign dedicated to a place that is especially rich in values of nature, memory and inventiveness promoted each year by Fondazione Benetton since 1990, is the starting point of investigation of a place that has been severed from the life of its community, a community that has been looking for a way back for a few years now, tackling an abyss that seems unsurpassable and looking towards the future with courage.
RETURNS is the autobiographical story of a journey through the countries of former Yugoslavia. A far-away country populated by ghosts for a student just turned eighteen in the Nineties, who sets off twenty years after the end of the war, to try and understand what happened to those places. The physical and human itinerary starts in the Veneto and crosses Ljubljana, Vukovar, Tuzla, Srebrenica and Sarajevo, marked by meetings, considerations, silences, intense testimonies and stretch after stretch, it leads to discovering the origin and evolution of a little big revolution, both personal and collective.
Author and actor connected to the themes and research of socially committed theatre, Tognazzo leaves the war and its cruelty in the background to stage the stories of a slow and difficult path of daily commitment towards peace, made up of tolerance, sharing and forgiveness. A civil reconstruction inspired by the personal experiences of the people he met at the Carlo Scarpa prize event, narrated through the tales of Zijo, a young Romani who miraculously escaped ethnic cleansing who finds the strength to forgive the people who killed his family, from Mansur, Muslim Bosniac, and Dalibor, orthodox Serb, i.e. the Wheat Brothers, who return to the villages on the Srebrenica plateau to farm buckwheat, until arrival in Sarajevo, which survived over one thousand days of siege, symbol city and place of multiculturalism and sharing.
Written with the scientific consultancy of Andrea Rizza Goldstein, coordinator for the Foundation
Alexander Langer Stiftung of the Adopt Srebrenica project, RETURNS has the patronage of Amnesty International Italia and the European Council – Venice Office.
The show debuted on 3rd October in Treviso, at Spazi Bomben.