Matadero Madrid center for contemporary creation
Donatella di Pietrantonio in Online conversation with Marialuisa Pappalardo
Matadero Madrid’s International Literature Festival welcomes Donatella di Pietrantonio. We will ask the author, nominated for the 2014 Strega Prize and winner of the Brancati, to read us a fragment of her latest and highly acclaimed novel, “A Girl Returned”, a work that many frame in an Italian neorealism revived by authors like Natalia Ginzburg or Elsa Morante.
“For years I never called her. From the moment I was given back to her, the word ‘mamma’ had stuck in my throat like a frog that wouldn’t jump out”. A teenager is sent back to the house of her legitimate parents after having spent her entire childhood adopted by wealthy distant relatives. Her story, her reasons for returning home, her relationship with the siblings she has just met, all intertwine in the moving monologue of this unforgettable character.
Donatella Di Pietrantonio (Arisa, 1963). Ms. Di Pietrantonio has been writing stories, fairy tales, poetry and novels since she was 9 years old. She became known in Italy with “My Mother Is a River” (2011, Tropea Prize). Her next work, “Bella Mia” (2014), was a finalist of the prestigious Strega Prize and went on to win the Brancati Prize. With her third novel, “A Girl Returned” (Duomo, 2021), a major success among critics and readers alike in Italy, she was a finalist for the Napoli Prize and winner of the Campiello Prize in 2017.
Marialuisa Pappalardo was born in Rome and is passionate about the arts and international relations. She holds a degree in Political Sciences from La Sapienza, a diploma in Piano and Musical Accompaniment from the Santa Cecilia Conservatoire in Rome, where she is also a student of Composition. After working at the Italian Institute of Foreign Commerce, she joined the Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, holding a series of positions in Mumbai, Buenos Aires and San Francisco. Since 2020 she has been the director of the Istituto Italiano di Cultura di Madrid.