• AHRC London Arts and Humanities Partnership Research

    Royal Central School of Speech and Drama

    LAHP-funded Collaborative Doctoral Award with

    Archive Franca Rame Dario Fo & Fondazione Fo Rame

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    Liberate Rame! The feminist practices of theatre-maker, activist, and archivist Franca Rame.

    This multi-mode research investigates how the work and legacy of Italian theatre-maker, political activist, and archivist Franca Rame (1929-2013) contribute to creating feminist theatre and performance-making practices. The title reflects my argument that, together with the need for liberation from forms of patriarchal memorialisation, Rame provides us with numerous, critical, and creative tools for feminist liberatory projects. To identify these tools, I investigate Rame’s representations of women in dialogue with Italian multiple feminisms and I develop a new account of her work with equal attention to script and performance, through a feminist analysis of the material held at Rame’s archive in Italy. I position her work within a complex genealogy of feminist and leftist political activism to unpack and contextualise her practice. I generate oral histories to investigate both her social relations of production in her collective work and her stage writing techniques, identifying a specific vocabulary for her theatre-making practice. This research explores the intersections between feminisms and Rame’s modes and forms of work, drawing on methodologies from feminist praxis, feminist performance studies, and performance-making analysis.
    Alongside this, a practice research project unfolds as a way of embodying the research developing a performance that will be presented in dialogue with the written thesis. Exploring vocality as a methodology to reactivate Rame's archive and repertoire, and to reflect thought into practice ('thinking through voice'), I explore new modes of feminist performance practice, to enhance vocal communication as a relationality, and connect political activism to corporeality through voice as the figure of embodied uniqueness.
    This research weaves these theoretical threads together, while my practice interventions propose feminist modes not to re-create but to reactivate Rame's practices, to rethink voice as a feminist practice, and help to disseminate my findings inside and outside academia.

    Italian philosopher Adriana Cavarero presents her talk The Voice of the Sirens, about the pleasure of singing and the uniqueness of the voice.
    Followed by Liberate Rame, a jazz theatre performance by Filomena Campus (vocals) and Steve Lodder (piano), dedicated to the late theatre artist Franca Rame.
    Prologue/presentation by Mattea Fo, President of Fondazione Fo Rame.
    Introduced by Katia Pizzi, Director of IIC London


    Filomena Campus sheds light on the life of Italian actress and theatre maker Franca Rame (1929-2013), who was also a playwright, director, producer, archivist, and political activist. Today, Rame is mostly remembered for the theatre work she created with her husband and collaborator, the Nobel Prize-winning playwright and performer Dario Fo.
    Campus’ performance is a tribute to a fellow woman artist and friend, who deserves to be acknowledged and celebrated in her own right. It features a letter to Fo that Rame published a few months before her death, intertwined with short extracts from Rame’s comic monologues, arrangements of popular tunes written by Fo and Rame, and new jazz compositions about Rame written by Campus and pianist Steve Lodder.
    Campus explores the relationship between vocal improvisation and theatre improvisation, which was one of Rame’s many talents, being born into a family of travelling actors and comedians with roots in the Commedia dell’ Arte.
    This project is part of Campus’ current research on Franca Rame at the Royal Central School of Speech and Drama, supported by LAHP (London Arts and Humanities Partnership).


    Adriana Cavarero is an Italian philosopher and Arendtian scholar. Honorary professor at the University of Verona, she is widely renowned for her writings on feminism, political philosophy and literature. She focuses on narrative, speech, sexual difference and political discourse. Her books include In Spite of Plato: A Feminist Rewriting of Ancient Philosophy (1995 ); Relating Narratives: Storytelling And Selfhood ( 2000); Stately Bodies: Literature, Philosophy And The Question of Gender ( 2002 ); For More Than One Voice: Toward a Philosophy Of Vocal Expression ( 2005) ; Horrorism: Naming Contemporary Violence ( 2009); Inclinations: A Critique of Rectitude ( 2016); Surging Democracy. Notes on Hannah Arendt’s Political Thought (2021).
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    RAI TV on our premiere in Verona, Italy, May 2023

  • Liberate Rame. Italian Cultural Institute London

    Webinar with Filomena Campus, Joseph Farrell, Tom Cornford, Marisa Pizza.

    Introduced by Katia Pizzi, Director of IIC London

    Including a video message by Jacopo Fo and Mattea Fo

    and an original video of Franca Rame and Dario Fo at the Archive Rame Fo.

    30 October 2020

    Part 2

    Webinar guests:


    The FONDAZIONE FO RAME was founded in 2019 with the aim of preserving the memory of the work of Dario Fo and Franca Rame, together with a work of cultural dissemination for present and future generations, inspired by the life and art of the two famous artists. Their artistic talent and works are indissolubly blended with their personal history, political and social commitment, giving, at the same time, a unique example of Life and Art. www.fondazioneforame.org


    The Archive Franca Rame Dario Fo was designed and implemented by Franca Rame in 1993. Since 2015 a portion of the Archive is located at the State Archive in Verona, in an area called 'MusALab' (Museum Archive Laboratory Franca Rame Dario Fo), that was recognised under the 'Cultural Heritage of Italian History' program and declared to have significant 'historical interest' by the Ministry of Cultural Heritage and Activities and Tourism. www.archivio.francarame.it


    Tom Cornford is Senior Lecturer in Theatre and Performance at The Royal Central School of Speech and Drama, University of London, and an editor of the international, peer-reviewed journal Studies in Theatre and Performance. His research focuses on relationships between theatre-making and contemporary politics and culture, in particular questions of political economy, labour and race. Recent publications include a special issue of Contemporary Theatre Review on director Katie Mitchell, and, with Cass Fleming, Michael Chekhov in the Twenty-First Century: New Pathways (Bloomsbury 2020). His monograph, Theatre Studios: A Political History of Ensemble Theatre-Making, will be published by Routledge in 2021.


    Joseph Farrell is Professor Emeritus in Italian of the University of Strathclyde. He is the author of Leonardo Sciascia; Dario Fo and Franca Rame: Harlequins of the Revolution, and Sicily: A Cultural History. He has translated many books from Italian (Sciascia, Consolo, Dario Fo, Franca Rame, Valerio Varesi among others) as well as three film scripts by Giuseppe Tornatore. The History of Italian Theatre was co-edited with Paolo Puppa, and he has edited volumes of essays on Carlo Goldoni, Dario Fo, Primo Levi, Carlo Levi, Ugo Betti, and the mafia. He has produced editions in English of plays by Fo/Rame, Pirandello, and Goldoni, and interview-books in Italian with Franca Rame and Dacia Maraini. He also works as theatre critic for such publications as The Scotsman and The Scottish Review of Books, publishes reviews and essays on cultural subjects in the Times Literary Supplement and The National. His most recent book is Robert Louis Stevenson in Samoa, while a revised and updated version of his biography of Fo-Rame was published in March 2019.


    Mariateresa Pizza, Director of Archivio MusALab Franca Rame Dario Fo, Fellow at the ICCD/MiBACT where she is in charge of the project "Knowledge and Enhancement of the Rame Fo Archive". She holds a PhD in Performing Arts at the University of Rome "Sapienza" and has achieved the national qualification for Associate Professor in 2014. Author of many publications, including: Il gesto, la parola, l’azione. Poetica, drammaturgia e storia dei monologhi di Dario Fo, Al lavoro con Dario Fo e Franca Rame. Genesi e composizione dello spettacolo teatrale.


    Filomena Campus. Jazz vocalist, theatre director, and academic, Campus has toured internationally and collaborated with top jazz artists. She is the Artistic Director of Theatralia, an international collective of performers and artists who combine literature, physical theatre, performance art, and inventive digital art with live music. Theatralia's productions include the acclaimed MONK Misterioso (by Stefano Benni), Credevo Che (with Simonetta Agnello Hornby), Italy VS England (with Stefano Benni), U238 (by Marco Paolini), and Not in My Name (by the Living Theatre). Campus is the founder of the Theatralia Jazz Festival, a yearly encounter of Italian and UK jazz musicians and artists, Since 2003 she has been working as a visiting lecturer and theatre director in UK universities such as the Royal Central School of Speech and Drama, East15 Acting School, Kingston University, Bucks New University, and UCL.


    Filomena Campus presents her research on Franca Rame at the webinar on Theatre and Translation organized by the University of Minas Gerais in Brazil. March 2021.

     Lançamento Espaço Virtual Dario Fo e Franca Rame https://darioefranca.com.br/

     2º Colóquio do GTT – programação completa https://coloquiogtt.wordpress.com/

    Webinar organised by Avanguardia Femminista with Filomena Campus and Dale Zaccaria.


    Campus presenta la sua ricerca su Franca Rame (Royal Central School of Speech and Drama di Londra) con Dale Zaccaria nella Rassegna Leggendarie -  9 Marzo 2021

    " L’intera mia vita ho inteso spenderla nella battaglia culturale e in quella sociale, nella politica fatta dai movimenti, da cittadina e da donna impegnata" FRANCA RAME

    Conoscenza e valorizzazione dell’Archivio Franca Rame Dario Fo

    Knowledge and enhancement of the Archive Franca Rame Dario Fo

    Istituto Centrale per il Catalogo e la Documentazione (ICCD)

    Ministero per i beni e le attività culturali (Ministry of Cultural Heritage and Activities)




  • Teaching

    Filomena Campus - MA Theatre Directing, First Class BA Hons in Foreign Languages and Literature - has been working as a visiting lecturer and freelance director in UK universities such as the Royal Central School of Speech and Drama, East15 Acting School University of Essex, Kingston University (Live Art and Theatre Dept.), Bucks New University, and UCL. In her work as an educator, Filomena has taught variously on theatre directing, acting, devising and physical theatre, improvisation techniques, voice and movement, theatre semiotics, text and performance analysis, political theatre and contextual studies. Additionally, Filomena gives regularly theatre and vocal masterclasses and workshops on jazz singing, acting, directing, and vocal improvisation.

    Training and Theatre Encounters

    Filomena has worked, studied or collaborated with international theatre practitioners such as Nobel Price winner Dario Fo, Franca Rame, Stefano Benni, Eugenio Barba & Odin Teatret, Roberta Carreri, Julia Varley, Marco Paolini, Marcello Magni (Complicite), Augusto Boal, Adrian Jackson, Judith Malina (Living Theatre), Toby Wilsher (Trestle Theatre), Frank Millward (Lumiere and Sons), Mei Bao Jiu (Bejing Opera), Lelio Lecis (Teatro Akroama), Mario Pirovano (Dario Fo Franca Rame Company), Franko B, Marina Abramovic. She has attended training classes or workshops with Peter Brook, GITIS Moscow, Frantic Assembly, David Glass, Familie Floez, Richard Eyre, Mitch Mitchelson, Laban contemporary dance, Clive Mendus (Complicite), Luigi Squarzina, Carlo Quartucci and many more.

    Check out Campus' directing work on the Theatralia page.