Living in Prato :
Centers of culture


Metropopolare is a collective of artists who come from the world of visual art, theater and cinema, founded in 2007 by Livia Gionfrida. To it adhere Giulia Aiazzi, Alice Mangano, Nicola Console and Marco Serafino Cecchi. Metropopolare based in Prato, and since 2007 works stably inside the Prison La Dogaia, the male prison of Prato that became for the collective a real artist residency. Metropopolare is part of the Tuscan Regional Coordination and the national Coordination of the Theatre in Prison and collaborates with Teatro Metastasio. After years of tough activity, and thanks to the collaboration of the Municipality, the Tuscany Region and the administration of the prison, with its educational area and the Penitentiary Police, Metropopolare has managed over time to develop more and more the idea of an "open" prison which is cultural garrison within the city and could be one more opportunity for exchange and growth both for prisoners and for all citizens.

In the prison the collective carries an intense training activities, an activity of theatre production and a hospitality project, through which the jail is open to artists with shows and concerts aimed at a mixed audience of few and external viewers. The collective collaborates with the anti-violence center La Nara and has enabled agreements with the Catholic University of Milan, the University of Bologna, Pisa and Florence. They work for the project Invito a Teatro with Maggio Musicale Fiorentino, Teatro della Toscana, Teatro Cantiere Florida and Teatro Metastasio. Metropopolare also deals with education in primary and secondary schools with education projects of theatre and visual art, education to legality and workshops aimed at the prevention of violence against women. In recent years the group has also worked at the Juvenile Penal Institutes of Florence and Pontremoli.

The cultural project of Metropopolare is very articulate, takes place inside and outside the prison walls of Prato and its implementation arrangements rely on different complementary phases. The heart of the project is the permanent laboratory for theatre research carried out inside the prison of Prato since 2007.
It takes place all year, involving about 100 prisoners, about thirty artists from the world of entertainment and opens up to external student actors at certain times of the year. The laboratory has a strong professionalizing cutting and aims at the development of skilled professional skills. It is supported by a strong production of the shows involving prisoners-actors and external artists. Metropopolare in recent years has created a trilogy dedicated to Shakespeare (Hamlet's Dream, Macbetto, H2Otello). He has created some performances dedicated to the schools public on the themes of legality and the show for children and families Rosaspina, inspired by the Prato textile industry boom of the postwar years.