Giovanna Summo

Dancer/actress, choreographer and director, has been educated at the National Dance Academy of Rome. Subsequently she studied with masters of Classic Dance, Contemporary Dance, Contact Improvisation and the Stanislavsky- Strasberg Method. She started her artistic career in 1979, in the field of dance and theatre, with experience in visual arts, opera and cinema. Her research concentrates on the connection and interaction between the arts, leading towards a poetic synthesis. In recent years she developed a strong interest in the Indian dance theatre by studying Kutiyattam at Kerala Kalamandalam. Apart from her own artistic work she always conducted educational activities for dancers and actors.

Her research ranges widely: from the western techniques of ballet and modern dance to contact improvisation; from acting techniques to the innovative experiences of western dance-theatre and Indian dance-theatre techniques. This wide variety of studies, combined with her many collaborations with artistsof diverse disciplines, have enabled her

to develop a broad vision of dance, extending the concept of dance to all forms of movement involved in staging a performance. Her study of Indian dance/theatre, has opened a new research field on the common roots of western and eastern art forms.

In 1985 she established with Silvana Barbarini and Ian Sutton the Vera Stasi dance company with the support of the Italian Ministry of National Heritage and Culture. She worked as a choreographer and author in the company for ten-years performing in Italy and abroad.

In 1997 she founded with director and visual artist Fabrizio Crisafulli, the Gruppo Arte Teatro Danza (Art Theatre Dance Group) a cultural association supported until 2009 by the Italian Ministry of National Heritage and Culture.

In 2010 she established Teatro Danza Occidente Oriente, (West East Dance Theatre), with which she created Danze e Terre di Memoria (Dances and Lands of Memory ), tribute to the great choreographer Anna Sokolow, Eastward ho! Based on the poetics of Hermann Hesse.

In 2010 she studied Kathakali with Kalamandalam Ratheesan, son of the great master Oyoor Kochugovinda Pillai, and from 2014 started her studies in Kutiyattam and Nangiarkoothu with Kalamandalam Shylaja and at Kerala Kalamandalam. In 2016 she did her Arangettam with Nangiarkoothu Purappadu at Kerala Kalamandalam.

Parallel to her artistic activity, she currently carries out intense teaching activity for actors and dancers at the state University, Roma Tre, and in private institutions.

University Roma Tre, Department of Philosophy, Communication and Performing Arts:
2008 – Workshops; Dance/theatre encounter.
2013 – Workshops; The influences of Indian culture on contemporary western dance- theatre.
2013 - work demostration and artistic path.
2016 - Workshops; Introduction to Kutiyattam.


La danza e il luogo, excerpt from “IL teatro come luogo e l’esperienza di formia, 1996-98”. by Raimondo Guarino, Gatd Roma 1998.
La danza, lo spazio ed il luogo, excerpt from “Teatro dei Luoghi. Lo spettacolo generato dalla realta’ “by Fabrizio Crisafulli, Artdigiland Dublino 2015.
Place, Body, Light. By Fabrizio Crisafulli. Personal accounts by Giovanna Summo. Dublin: Artdigiland 2013.






Excerpts from Luogo, Corpo, Luce, (Place, Body, Ligth), The theatre of Fabrizio Crisafulli, Artidigiland (2016)