Your campaign ‘Centennial of Eleanora Duse in Venice exhibit; Arrigo Boito, Pittsburgh; Fascism and Newark in the 1920’s.’

Subject: Centennial of Eleanora Duse in Venice exhibit; Arrigo Boito, Pittsburgh; Fascism and Newark in the 1920's.

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Exhibition “Se mi dura questo entusiasmo finirò come Narciso”. Photographic Portraits of the Great Actress Eleonora Duse


Island of San Giorgio Maggiore, Venice

May, 13Dec, 16 2022

“Ahead of the major anniversary in 2024, a hundred years since the death of Eleonora Duse (1858–1924), the Institute of Theatre and Opera, is staging a photographic exhibition featuring the great Italian diva. Curated by Maria Ida Biggi and Marianna Zannoni, the exhibition project has drawn on the rich photographic collection in the Duse Archive held by the Fondazione Giorgio Cini. The collection contains original prints by several famous photographers of the time, leading exponents of Italian and international photography, testifying to the charm that Duse exerted over her contemporaries. This exhibition is the first in a series of shows to be held in Eleonora Duse’s Room, each aimed at exploring a specific aspect of Eleonora Duse’s biography and career: her relationship with Venice and the Veneto region (2022), her success in Italy and the national theatre context (2023) and her international reputation (2024).

Alongside photographic prints showing the actress in private portraits and costumed stage poses, visitors will be able to admire a selection of her personal objects and papers and reconstruct her relations with the city of Venice and the entire Veneto region. Duse’s family was originally from Chioggia, her grandfather Luigi, also an actor, founded the Teatro Duse in Padua and, at the end of her itinerant life, she chose Asolo, as her place of residence.”

NB- Duse and Arrigo Boito(1842–1918) who write MEFISTOFELE also had an long term affair. Boito was known for his libretti for Verdi of FALSTAFF; OTELLO and revisions of SIMON BOCCANEGRA.

While living in Milan, I accidentally came across Via Arrigo Boito a street named in his honor. Madame Duse died while on her last American tour in Pittsburgh, PA in 1924.


Mussolini was beginning his infamous rise to power in the 1920's.

6 Men Stabbed In Newark: THE NEW YORK TIMES on 8/17/25

While doing archival research I discovered a 1925 story about 6 Men Stabbed In Newark (8/17/25) in an attack by anti and pro-Fascist meeting in Newark.

The League of North America broke up an Opposition Meeting using razors and knives in this altercation, which culminated in a Bloody Riot.

In the background SACCO & VANZETTI were sitting in prison, and appealing their Death Sentence while awaiting a new trial.

Understanding Columbus (1920–27), the Red Scare, SACCO & VANZETTI (1920–2020) while “Columbus” (1925) was removed from his site in Newark, NJ.

Understanding Columbus a century ago (1920–25), the

Red Scare, SACCO & VANZETTI (1920–27)and now as he is

removed from his perch in Newark, NJ (2020).


/ — Newark, Italy and me ( over a century with hind-sight and fore sight from 1920–2020.

The Dawn of Nevarca (Newark’s Little Italy) from 1885

when they fled economic hardship and poverty of the

impoverished Mezzogiorno region. Southern Italy (Il

Sud) was the raison d’etre for Newark’s Little Italy.

Phonetically, Nevarca, was a Southern Italian

contraction for their New Ark in America. Antonio

Caruso (my great-Grandfather) arrived in the 1880’s

and became a grocer in the 1st Ward on 8th Ave (now

Central Ward). His wife’s maiden name was Tuosto. They all attended St Lucy’s Church and their 9 children worked in the grocery store to help the family earn a living.

Basso Family profile (1924)

The Italian immigrant Italians suffered deportations and discrimination. In part this came out of the 1912, 1913 and 1919 labor strikes in Paterson, and Lowell Massachusetts. Deportations began the FBI career of 24 year old J Edgar Hoover. The Red Scare was begun after the Russian Revolution in 1917–20. Labor activists like the Irish native Elizabeth Gurley Flynn spoke at the American Labor Museum Botto House during the 1913 Paterson strike. Russian émigré Emma Goldman was also active in the pursuit of workers rights and a living wage. She was later deported back to Russia.

A Shoe Factory Payroll robbery in 1920 in South Braintree Massachusetts for which Nicola Sacco & Bartolomeo Vanzetti (Sacco & Vanzetti) were arrested. Terrified, they spoke little English. They

became a media sensation of the radical left and the hard rock

conservatives in Boston. They endured 2 infamous trials. They were convicted of “consciousness of guilt” and executed by electric chair in 1927.

While in Italy, the other elephant was Mussolini (1883–1945) who rose to power in 1922 . COLUMBUS was a manifestation of anti-fascism in Newark in that period. 11 immigrants were lynched in New Orleans. Yet, the Italians remained here as Italy devolved into Fascism.

In 1925–27, the Giuseppe Verdi Society of Newark commissioned a Columbus statue for Washington Park on Broad St. Those statues demonstrated their commitment to Newark and America. Americans also embraced Tenor Enrico Caruso (1873–1921) who bridged opera nd popular music to become one of the best selling recording artists of all time. Italians repressed their language in America. My Mother was scolded by her Grandfather to never speak Italian outside their house. They all struggled to learn English. It was considered anathema to speak Italian in public.

They also also saluted Columbus at that time based in part to the popular Columbus World’s Fair exhibitions which marked their identity as Americans in a foreign land. The Statue of Liberty greeted these refugees in New York Harbor and at Ellis Island from their impoverished life in Southern Italy. Caruso and Verdi’s music still shine as legends in Italian culture and every opera house in the world.

The Newark Sunday Call published a striking photo of my Caruso Family in 1925. The Irish journalist referred to them as a “clan” which is an endearing Irish expression foreign to gli Italiani (the Italians). As an Irish-Italian and now a bridge between both cultures. When asked if I was

“Irish” at LaScala, and later when directing Tom Murphy’s Irish play The Gigli Concert in Italian in Rome.

As an Irish-Italian I am a bridge between both cultures especially when asked if I was “Irish” at LaScala. Later I made my European debut when I directed Tom Murphy’s Irish play The Gigli Concert in Italian in Rome. As a child I remembered a few Italian expressions but nothing else.

Frustrated, after my Master’s Degree at The American University in Washington, DC, I started taking Italian language classes in Bloomfield and Belleville Adult Schools before my season at LaScala and began the rediscovery of my complicated Irish-Italian roots here and in Italy ever since.

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Daniel P Quinn


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