(Fiesole, Florence, 1923- 2016)

Giorgio Albertazzi, theater, cinema and television actor, was born in Fiesole, in the province of Florence, on August 20, 1923. His debut took place in Florence at the Meridiana Theater where he acted in The Chandelier by De Musset, directed by F. Enriquez. In the year 1949 he met Luchino Visconti in Florence during the preliminary work for The Tragedy of Troilus and Cressida by Shakespeare. The famous director chose young Albertazzi for the role of Alessandro. That production remained in history and saw together on the stage of Boboli actors such as Gassman, De Lullo, Stoppa, Ricci, Tofano, Elena Zareschi and Memo Benassi.
At the beginning of the 1950s, thanks to Luchino Visconti, he entered in the Compagnia del Teatro Nazionale (National Theater Company) directed by G. Salvini. In that period he put himself on the line by playing in works of important and famous writers such as Kingsley, Fry and Ibsen. The great success of the public came with The Seducer by Fabbri, brought to the scenes during a long American tour together with Ricci, Magni, Buazzelli, and Proclemer. In 1956 he created his own company with Anna Proclemer. The Proclemer-Albertazzi couple obtained huge consent by bringing to the scenes texts by D’Annunzio, Marceau, Faulkner, Camus, Ibsen, Sartre and numerous other authors of the classical repertoire. During the twenty years of their intense activity, Albertazzi and Proclemer imposed to the world of theater their personal modern style of acting that was new, incisive and focused on them the attention of the public and of critics. Abertazzi obtained wide notoriety and success when he began to act for the newly born Italian television works by Shakespeare, De Musset, Giacosa, and Molnar. It is indeed for his notoriety that following the advice of Pietro Bianchi (> Link Scheda) Giorgio Albertazzi was chosen in 1958 by Pietro Barilla to shoot 31 advertising spots for the Barilla company that were aired during the program Carosello between October of 1958 and June of 1959. In the first series, that opens with the curtains designed by Erberto Carboni, the popular actor narrates historical facts such as the era of Prohibition or the first flight by the Wright Brothers, and spoke to the audience about Pirandello, Caruso, Carnera and Einstein, of Sarah Bernhardt and Mistinguett (pseudonym of Jenne Bourgeois), presenting rare short historical archive films that he “found” – according the scheme of fictional narrative of the spot – in the intriguing home of his grandfather. The following year instead, he read love poems and excerpts from famous poems or some of the letters written by famous authors of literature, from Catullus to Bertold Brecht, going through Dante, Leopardi and Garcia Lorca.
At the end of the reading, Albertazzi, who was given by Achille Campanile the nickname of “the swan of pasta” for these spots, “gives the word to…Barilla”. The texts and the scripts are by Pietro Bianchi, while the director was Mario Fattori, who filmed the production in Milan. In following periods Albertazzi was again the face and the voice of advertising: in 1964 he filmed a series of episodes with Anna Proclemer for the series entitled “The Gentleman Thief” for Idrolitina Gazzoni and a series of brief television communications for the Pasticca del Re Sole (The Lozenges of the Roy Soleil). In 1971 he interpreted “A little story of cinema” for the Confezioni Sanremo, and later he was the testimonial for a series of editions of the classics of literature. His artistic career progressed with success in theater, cinema and television up until 2016, the year of his death.

Cecilia Farinelli