Ferruccio Soleri

International “Lorenzo il Magnifico” Award for Culture 1997

Ferrucio Soleri (born in Florence in 1929) graduated from the National Academy of Dramatic Arts Silvio D’Amico in Rome. He studied with Orazio Costa and made his debut at Milan’s Piccolo Teatro in The tale of the changed son by Pirandello, under the direction of his teacher. He discovered his true calling in 1959 when he took the place of Marcello Moretti in the principal role in Arlecchino servitor di due padroni by Carlo Goldoni directed by Giorgio Strehler.

From then on, Arlecchino’s famous mask found its perfect material counterpart in Soleri’s incredible physical agility and performative range. One can say, without doubt, that Arlecchino is Soleri and Soleri is Arlecchino.

This extraordinary commitment to the character has won the actor numerous honours from all over the world. Strelher’s Arlecchino was performed 2600 times and became the longest-running Italian theatre piece in the world. After 50 years as Arlecchino, Soleri was entered into the Guinness World Records for the longest-running theatrical performance of the same role.

Ferruccio Soleri is not only an incredibly talented actor: in 1971 he also made his debut directing comedy and later lyrical opera, and has since put on shows at some of the most renowned theatres in the world. He has taught his method in many famous Drama schools and has organized traineeships on the Commedia dell’Arte and on theatre in general all over the world.