Roberto Morgantini does not know how to stay still. The new Commendatore of the Republic, awarded by Sergio Mattarella in Rome, has come up with another great idea: the ‘suspended’ theatre ticket. Twenty guests from his Cucine Popolare (People’s Kitchen) were invited to Arena del Sole Theatre to see the show by Ascanio Celestini, ‘Pueblo’. Their tickets were already paid for, or rather offered, by anonymous and of course very generous Bolognese.
THE IDEA was founded in Naples, originally from the ‘suspended’ coffee concept. Someone pays upfront for someone less fortunate to take up later. In Bologna, Morgantini, has expanded on this idea firstly, creating the suspended sandwich, then the suspended lunch, and now the suspended theatre ticket. “The theatre, and culture, in general, is one of the first things that during economic hardships are undercut”, highlights the ex-trade Cgil trade unionist. “In this way, we can try to provide a different afternoon to those who live a reality more complicated than our own.”
Anonymous Bolognese donated tickets for Ascanio Celestini’s show
THE SUSPENDED tickets took off towards the end of 2018 and cost 8 euros with the total collected being distributed to different associations. Therefore, it’s not just the Cucine Popolare, but also Caritas, Piazza Grande, Piccoli Grandi Cuori, the Asp and social services from the Municipality. In return, whoever buys a ticket can enjoy a 50% discount for two tickets to another show on the theatre program and this even carries over to the suspended lunch campaign. Those involved in the gastronomic plan include some of the city’s most diverse spots, such as the Persian restaurant in Via Lianori, the ethical pizzeria Masaniello and La Sfoglina Alessandra Spisni. Morgantini is also in talks with Camst located on via Indipendenza but more importantly, they are a national company with thousands of outlets.
Negotiations are close to being finalised. As far as their branch in the city, Morgantini admits that “This will allow the purchase of lunches in one of the busiest restaurants in the centre, meaning even more people can help out our city’s most vulnerable people.”