Naturalness wins in Teather. Interview with actress Ingrid Sansone.

Since her childhood she conquered the audience with her naturalness.

At the time of her Languages studies, Ingrid Sansone had already done her tough apprenticeship. She was a professional actress in an established Neapolitan theater company.

Her impeccable pronunciation in languages combined with an interpretative talent even confused mother tongue teachers who believed her to be a foreign student.

Ingrid grew up in an established Neapolitan theater company led by her maternal grandmother Luisa Conte who, despite her disappearance many years ago, remains an icon of the Neapolitan theater.

Being the granddaughter of celebrity Luisa Conte, wasn’t easy at all. However she managed to become a very good and respected actress by putting into practice everything she had learned.

Like her sister Lara, Ingrid made her stage debut at the age of 5. Since then she began to know the Neapolitan theatrical tradition that she enriched through her studies by attending both American and Italian schools in Napoli and by living her own artistic experiences.

During her theatrical career she has acted alongside other professionals in the sector and has started under well known directors such as G. Di Martino, A. Pugliese, F. Saponaro, M. Lenton, L. Muscato.

She begun soon to share the stage with high caliber actors such as L. De Filippo, P. Barra, G. Onorato, L. Mastelloni. In addition to the theater, she sometimes enjoys participating in television series, such as Doctor Gio ‘or more recently, I Bastardi di Pizzofalcone.

Last Fall Ingrid has been on tour with a show entitled “Filumena in arte Titina”(Filomena in art Titina), with verses written by Titina de Filippo and music by Brunello Canessa, featuring unpublished poems, writings and monologues that have made Ms. De Filippo famous.

Since the beginning of this year the actress has been alongside Enzo De Caro on a national tour with “Non e’ vero ma ci credo” (It’s Not True but I Believe It), a Peppino De Filippo comedy , directed by Leo Muscato.

Ingrid Sansone

Ingrid has followed her grandmother’s teachings in life as well as on stage, and was also led by her grandmother’s director, Giuseppe Di Martino, a Sicilian who had been one of the first teachers at the Silvio D’Amico Academy, in Rome. A person that she particularly cares about.

IS – Giuseppe was like a grandfather to me. I am grateful to him for all his teachings and suggestions. When I was a teenager I wanted to attend a theater school abroad but since I was not yet of age I regretted not being able to do so. Giuseppe told me to be patient and to treasure the bases that I was already building by being part of my grandmother’ established theater troupe. He reassured me by telling me that this would happen at the right time. Meanwhile, he suggested to me Italian and foreign books and lectures to expand my cultural background. –

Like the scent of a flower that, as soon as it has blossomed, releases its most intense perfume, in the same way her talent toke her beyond. Ingrid as a girl was not superficial at all. She cared and paid attention to everything she did. Soon she followed a series of artistic paths one of which she is pleased to remember. It happened in Rome, when she met Sheila Robins who chose her to participate in the Hollywood Acting Workshop in Los Angeles.

IS – Neapolitans are able to pass a false story as true because we are natural in telling it. The dear old Giuseppe Di Martino attributed this characteristic to the Neapolitans. Naturalness. Indeed you can experience that an academic actor, compared to actors trained on stage, is more recognizable as he is remarkably fake, because purposely stripped of his naturalness.-

Naturalness, as the innate theatricality of the Neapolitan is probably also fueled by the strength of our language. In fact, the Neapolitan language a sentence has, in addition to the meaning of the phrase itself, also indications of behavior, or other surrounding meanings. Therefore a sentence, said in Neapolitan, may want to communicate several things at the same time.
This vast range of shades of color are clearly inherent in the Neapolitan soul.

There are those who act to become celebrities and those who act for the art to express and communicate.
After the workshop in Los Angeles there was nothing that Ingrid held back. Also, in Napoli she had a love and a successful television series waiting for her.

She often moves for work or for vacation. However she would never leave Napoli permanently.

IS – I can live long periods away from my city but I always need to know that I have a house in Napoli. My house is there. –

Ingrid’s elder sister Lara follows the family tradition by acting and taking care of the “bomboniera” of via Chiaia, the historic Sannazaro theater, once managed by grandmother Luisa. Ingrid is an established actress who is always engaged on stage. They both continue to share Neapolitan culture and our old tradition of Neapolitan theater learned on the stage tables.

IS – My sister and I used to go to school in NATO in the morning, get off from school at 3pm or 5pm and then go to the theater for rehearsals. We stayed there until late in the night and then returned home with grandmother Luisa. We have lived and still live on theater today. About tradition I can say I am very attached to it. Tradition is the combination of all the colors and sounds that we carry inside. Like the beautiful things of our language, which is music. Even if my first name is not a traditional Neapolitan (she smiles. ed.), I deeply respect tradition. –

Donna Luisa had an established theater troupe and managed a prestigious theater in Napoli. There was a lot to do in the theater and she was very picky. Even her daughter, Ingrid’s mother, who was a teacher of literature and Latin, at some point in her life left the profession she loved in order to help her family.
Many believe that being the granddaughter of a celebrity is easy and paves the way for success. The myth of favoritism must be revealed. In fact, precisely by virtue of this, the famous Neapolitan actress with her granddaughters was very demanding and rigid. However, this education is still valid both in the private and professional fields and Ingrid is proud of it.

IS – Being Luisa Conte granddaughter? Yes, it has been quite hard. Since we were her granddaughters, she expected the absolute best from us because we had to be an example for the others. I’ll make an example by telling you what happened one day.
I was sixteen and I had my German test at school. Grandma scheduled rehearsal for the show in the morning. I was not in the first scene. Therefore I told her that I would reach the theater as soon as I gave the assignment at school, hoping to be able to be at the theater by 12pm. Although it was about school her gaze was stiff.

That morning I managed to turn in the assignment before 12pm and ran at the theater. I arrived on time and got perfectly into my lines. My grandmother interrupted the rehearsal and gave me a super sonic prick yelling in front of the entire theater troupe. When I was a teenager, I thought it was absurd. I was not late and had been to school. In fact, I had an old-style education, I was educated with strict discipline but I’m happy because today this is advantageous for me –

And that’s exactly how it is. Ingrid as a woman and as an actress is not a snob. She just does not like gossip and she focuses on her work. She is simply reserved and professional but superficial people don’t have eyes to notice it.

In spite of being an accomplished actress with a recognized talent Ingrid is a humble person.
She has a strong temperament but she is sweet and empathetic.
She is endowed with a great sensitivity like few others. She can’t stand injustice. If you see an abuse or an injustice you are on the front line in defense of the weak that you defend with “teeth and claws”.

The harsh cold and the restrictions of last winter did not dissuade her from taking to the streets with hot food prepared by herself for the homeless. Since Donna Luisa taught her granddaughters humility and humanity Ingrid has never stopped doing this.
In some places in the world, which make themselves bearers of democracy, doing good to people in need can be illegal unless it is done through some association or organization. The “u.s.a. e getta” celebrities do charity to offload taxes. In Napoli, consideration for the others is spontaneous and independent. In Napoli, people remain human and as a good Neapolitan “scugnizza” Ingrid fully represents their spirit.
She has many friends that she loves. She likes cooking and her life is rich in humanity and devoted to theater and to others. But it’s not just the people she cares about. In fact, she is very sensitive to the problems of animals, their mistreatment and abandonment.
She has a kitten named Nocciolina who is the guard of the house and, since fourteen years now, her poodle, Drusilla, accompanies her every time and everywhere.

IS – When my sister and I were children every Christmas and every Epiphany, grandma Luisa took us with her to hospices and orphanages to visit the less fortunate kids and to bring them food and gifts. This is something that I still do today besides cooking for the homeless. I would love one day to realize a project that I have in mind and that involves animals and old people. –