Marco Gambino reads Il palazzo di gelato by Gianni Rodari
He is probably the most beloved children’s writer in Italy. His writing career began in 1951 with the publication of his first text, a book of nursery rhymes, which was followed in the same year by “The Adventures of Little Onion,” which, while passing almost silently in Italy, was successfully translated into Russian. Thanks to translations by Russian poet Samuil Marshak and Russian linguist Julia Dobrovolskaya, Gianni Rodari’s stories, fairy tales and nursery rhymes are known and loved by every Russian born after the war.
In five years the book has sold more than one and a half million copies, and entire delegations of Italian politicians and intellectuals visiting the Soviet Union have heard of a certain Gianni Rodari whom, paradoxically, they had never heard of until an article by journalist Ruggero Grieco entitled “Cipollino in the country of the Soviets” appeared in L’Unità. From this point on, Gianni Rodari began to be known and read in Italy, and in 1960 he began working with the publishing house Einaudi, which would eventually publish all his books.This year in Italy we are celebrating the centenary of his birth.
Italian writer and actor, currently living in London.