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Rome Reports

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Lourdes apparitions turned into a musical: 70,000 tickets sold in three months


In only three months, 70,000 people have seen this musical about the life of Bernadette of Lourdes.

It's the latest mise-en-scène recreating the apparitions of the Blessed Mother to the young shepherd girl in 1858. This particular production focuses on the evolution of the relationships within Bernadette's own family.

FATIMA LUCARINI
Spokesperson in Italy, “Bernadette of Lourdes”
“After watching the musical, many people leave the theater with a desire to reconnect with their parents, and to hug them again, despite their difficulties. Bernadette had to fight against people in the Church and against her family. In the end, it was her father who was always close to her. Her mother was, too, but for her it was difficult at first. What happened to Bernadette upset her family life, which made it hard to accept.”

The story recounts how the apparitions of the Blessed Mother completely changed Bernadette's life and environment. The script is taken from official reports from that time period. The costumes were designed to accurately depict the style of the era, nearly 200 years ago.

Fatima Lucarini says the best part of the musical is its origin. The idea came from the grandmother of one of the producers.

FATIMA LUCARINI
Spokesperson in Italy, “Bernadette of Lourdes”
“The project was born out of the blue, while the two producers, Eléonore de Galard and Roberto Ciurleo, were in the Pyrenees for another job. Roberto remembered that when he was a young boy, his grandma would tell him she prayed for him often to Our Lady of Lourdes. That's why, on one of his days off, he said, 'I want to visit the grotto.' Several people joined him. It was such a strong and magical moment for them that, upon returning, Roberto said, 'We have to make a show about Bernadette.'”

The musical will return to Lourdes in April. It will remain there seven months before making its way through Canada, Brazil, Argentina, Lebanon and Belgium.

Before their international tour, the actors got the chance to greet the pope in Rome. They even dedicated one of the musical's songs to him.

Javier Romero

Translation: Claudia Torres