Miracle Players - English theatre in Rome, Italy
Miracle Players


December 11, 2001

Cast: Rob Allyn, Eric Bassanesi, Giulia Bernardini,
Denise McNee and Parysa Pourmoneshi

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On December 11th 2001 the Miracle Players set out for Tarquinia to perform "The History of Rome" despite rumours of wild panthers roaming the Tarquinian countryside.

We received an invitation from Ms Francesca Subrizi of the Italian Middle School "Ettore Sacconi" in Tarquinia to perform "The History of Rome" for her students. The request came after her son came and thoroughly enjoyed the summer version of the show in the Roman forum. In fact, he enjoyed it so much he thought it would be nice if his school mates could see it too. Ms Francesca Subrizi, along with her colleagues at "Ettore Sacconi", organised the performance of "The History of Rome" for the students' Christmas party. Special thanks also go to Dr Osvaldo Pesiri, the headmaster of "Ettore Sacconi", and Dr Gentili for the use of the Aula Magna at the Centro Capotorti di Tarquinia.

Here are the students as they await the unfolding saga of "The History of Rome":

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Thanks to a mixture of their knowledge of the history of Rome and a fair comprehension of English, the students greatly enjoyed the performance. To assist the students we performed in our usual physical style, exaggerated our visual gags and gave less emphasis on our textual jokes, especially the idiomatic ones.

An usually cold December may help to explain this backstage version of our costume. When show time arrived, however, the extra layers were peeled off and the show was performed in our usual costume. Well... with the addition of long johns and tights.

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We prepared a quiz for the students that was conducted like a quiz show after the performance. If the student gave the correct answer they were given the Emperors crown, if they gave the wrong answer the barbarians were allowed to punish them with their axes (plastic of course). Consequently, the stakes were high!

See if you are an emperor or a barbarian by answering the quiz we prepared for the students of "Ettore Sacconi".

1: Who was the first King of Rome? 
2: What is the name of Romulus' invention?  
3: What is "the hot heavy thing that gets rid of the creases in your toga?"
4: What did the fortune teller say to Julius Caesar?
5: What did Emperor Nero say when he died?
6: What did the gladiators say before they started fighting?
7: What is the name of the first Christian Emperor?

We will check your answers and let you know whether you're fit for royalty or still need a little refinement!




Tarquinia is about 90km away from Rome and started life as an Etruscan city. Tarquinia today is most famous for the Necropolis or Tombs. When we asked advice on what to see in the city the tourist board answered, "When you're in Egypt you see the pyramids when you are in Tarquinia you see the tombs".

That being said, after the performance we set out to explore the tombs, some of which date back to the 6th Cent. B.C. Unfortunately, we were overcome by "The return of the living dead" coming out of one of the tombs. Although on closer inspection they do seem to look very familiar.

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If you would like the Miracle Players to perform for your school, please don't hesitate to contact us.

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