Twenty-six villages on the Naviglio Grande and Naviglio Martesana rivers in the province of Milan will be turned into open-air stages for a series of street theatre performances throughout the summer.

Single street artists and larger groups of clowns, acrobats and musicians will entertain the public with unique live shows, fireworks, light performances, stilt dancing and sword dances. The programme includes dozens of performances by Italian artists and companies from all over the world.

Until 5 July some municipalities on the Naviglio Grande river, west of Milan, host the 14th edition of the itinerant festival "The Streets of Theatre" organized by the municipality of Abbiategrasso. This year's edition is dedicated to humanism under the artistic direction of Luca Cairati.

Shows take place in Abbiategrasso, Cassinetta di Lugagnano, Gaggiano, Corbetta and the ancient village of Fallavecchia di Morimondo.

Performances include "Night of light", a colourful and rhythmic fire performance by the Atmo company; "Amen", a spectacle of poid pois, a discipline from New Zealand that harmonizes soul and body, by the company Lumen Invoco; and the circus show "Cirk" by the Pantakin group of clowns and acrobats.

This year's festival will end with a three-day artistic workshop at the ex Annunciata Convent (Via Pontida 18) in Abbiategrasso from 3 to 5 July. Actors and participants will together explore the centrality of man and how to put man, culture and sociality in general back at the centre of modern cities. For more information tel. 0294692220/292.

Until the end of September numerous villages on the Adda river will host musicians and acrobats for the event "Martesana in Piazza". Acrobats, magicians, clowns and musicians from famous international schools of street theatre will perform 13 renowned pieces from the Italian and international traditions of street theatre, in the main squares of Pioltello, Cambiago, Gorgonzola, Inzago, Bussero, Melzo, Vimodrone, Cernusco sul Naviglio and other locations northeast of Milan.

Companies performing include "Super mambo five acrobats", comprising five actors-athletes from Kenya, who will form human pyramids and perform exceptional jumps and fire games, and the "Silmaril Fire" company, made up of two fire dancers, who will perform contemporary, Indian, gypsy and Brazilian dance as well as popular and folk dance with the support of torches. Last but not least, there is the "Circus Parody" by Girovago and Rondella, with unique transformisms, stilt shows and live music performed by mime artists and musicians. For more information tel. 0236554500.

All street performances are free and open to the public. Shows will start daily around 16.00 and continue until late at night.

General Info