Italian women get festive with nude storytelling

A group of Italian women will this weekend get into the festive spirit with a nude reading of Charles Dickens’ famous novella, A Christmas Carol.

Italian women get festive with nude storytelling
The 1843 English classic, A Christmas Carol, will be retold by three nude Italian women. Photo: Naked Girls Reading Rome

Members of Naked Girls Reading Rome, an offshot of a US group which organizes nude literary readings, will perform the short novel at Teatro Centrale on Sunday evening.

The 1843 English classic, which tells the tale of Londoner Scrooge’s hatred for Christmas, will be retold by three nude Italian women.

Actress Mariaelena Masetti Zannini, street performer Mimì Bohèmien and burlesque dancer Candy Rose will take to the stage, introduced by Albadoro Gala.

“It’s a form of burlesque,” said Gala, who brought Naked Girls Reading to Rome after meeting one of the US founders in Las Vegas. The concept was created five years ago in Chicago, by performer Michelle L’amour and her partner Franky Vivid.

After a successful bilingual performance of Shakespeare’s sonnets in October, the group’s Christmas reading will be conducted entirely in Italian. The audience will mostly be made up of Italian women, Gala said.

“It’s an initiative which changes depending on the society. There are so many differences between a performance in Italy and one in the US.

“Italians can get embarrassed by it, but there are people who are curious and not judgemental,” she told The Local.

The particular draw of Naked Girls Reading is its “originality”, Gala said: “I like to bring new things to Italy.” 

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Body of missing American tourist found in Rome’s River Tiber

The body of a missing 21-year-old tourist was found in the River Tiber on Thursday morning, according to media reports.

Body of missing American tourist found in Rome's River Tiber

Elijah Oliphant, from Dallas, Texas, was on holiday with his family in Rome when he went missing several days ago.

Oliphant’s parents reported his disappearance after he left his hotel room shortly after midnight on May 24th and did not return.

Hotel security footage showed him leaving the premises wearing a white undershirt and pyjama bottoms, which he was wearing when he was found.

Oliphant’s corpse was reportedly spotted by passersby near the Ponte Sisto bridge in Rome’s Trastevere district around 10am on Thursday morning. His body was positively identified by his parents.

Members of the fire brigade and river police who recovered the body say there were no obvious signs of violence, but an autopsy will be conducted to determine the cause of death. Trastevere police are reportedly investigating the matter.

The Oliphant family had arrived in Rome for a holiday on May 23rd. When Elijah went missing the following day, his parents launched an urgent appeal to help find their son.

His disappearance was featured on the missing persons television show, Chi l’ha visto (‘Who’s seen them?’) on May 25th.

Several foreigners have been found drowned in the Tiber in recent years, though there are no indication that any of the incidents are linked.

In 2016, the body of 19-year-old American student Beau Solomon was recovered from the river.

Rough sleeper Massimo Galioto was charged involuntary manslaughter in the case, but was ultimately acquitted in 2020.

Prosecutors said that Galioto pushed Solomon in the course of a violent argument. Galioto’s defense team acknowledged that the two had argued but said the student had accidentally slipped.

In May 2019, 37-year-old Imen Chatbouri, a former athletics champion from Tunisia, was found dead in the Tiber after a night out. CCTV footage later showed she had been pushed from the Ponte Sisto bridge.

A then-26-year-old man whose advances she had rejected earlier that evening was convicted of her murder in November 2021.