maggio “Rodomonte”

Anonymous epic maggio based on the Orlando Furioso, performed by the Compagnia maggistica Monte Cusna di Asta (Villa Minozzo [RE]).

Opening stanza (Orlando Furioso 1.1):


Carlomagno on Agramante’s attack:


Agramante sends messenger for reinforcements:


Doralice warns Mandricardo of Rodomonte’s approach:


Rodomonte fights Mandricardo:


La pazzia di Orlando:


Ippalca tells Ruggiero Rodomonte stole his horse:


Doralice chooses Mandricardo over Rodomonte:


Ruggiero fights Mandricardo:


Orlando fights Rodomonte:


Bradamante hears news of Ruggiero:


Brandimarte fights Rodomonte:


Bradamante fights Rodomonte:


Bradamante in Arles:


Rodomonte in Paris:

Fivizzano (MS), July 24, 2005. Filmed by Jo Ann Cavallo and Pietro Porta.


Le prove a casa Zambonini


“The Rodomonte […] allots comparatively greater space to vicissitudes on the Saracen side, where characters are developed in their own right and not treated simply as enemies of the Christian heroes. The prominence of the Saracen characters is even suggested in its title, which replaces Orlando’s name with that of the fierce Algerian warrior king. As the maggio opens, Charlemagne announces that King Agramante has invaded his territory motivated by a desire for revenge, thus completely leaving out the question of their different religious creed. The action then moves directly to the Saracen side as the African king, surrounded by the Christian army, sends a messenger to look for military support, while the Spanish Saracen maiden Doralice, in the arms of her new beau Mandricardo, fears the approach of her old flame Rodomonte. Having omitted Mandricardo’s ruthlessless in abducting Doralice in the original poem, the maggio underscores the tender affection between the two Saracens and transforms Ariosto’s fickle Doralice into a model of devotion. The maggio, furthermore, privileges scenes that feature Christians and Saracens in analogous situations. For example, while Orlando arrives at the tree inscribed with the names of his beloved Angelica and her lover Medoro, Rodomonte learns that his own betrothed Doralice prefers another and thus in some respects parallels Orlando in his loss of sanity.”

From Cavallo, “National Political Ideologies and Local Maggio Traditions of the Reggio Emilia Apennines: Roncisvalle vs. Rodomonte.” Conquistare la montaga: la storia di un’idea. Conquering Mountains: The History of an Idea. Eds. Carlo Baja Guarienti and Matteo Al Kalak. Milan: Mondadori, 2016. 121-134.