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[find out our story...]

Teatro nelle Foglie is a traveling space for culture,

born to write, produce, stage and distribute

circus-theater plays,

intended as inter-disciplinary performances.

Underneath our marquee we combine shadow theater, mime, aerial acrobatics, dance, object manipulation and the art of clownery. Thus mixing the strength of the circus with the improvisation of street theater and the poetry of puppetry. 



 Nicolas Benincasa 

Buenos Aires, ARG - 1979

Street artist, clown, mime, juggler, acrobat,

theater-circus actor, scenografist and musician


 Marta Finazzi 

Genoa, IT - 1987

Street artist, theater-circus actress, scenarist and teacher of the aerial disciplines


 Elena Fresch 

Pordenone, IT - 1982

Street-, circus- and theatre artist, acrobat and clown

Matteo Mazzei 

Genoa, IT - 1980

Street-, circus- and theatre artist, acrobat and clown


Our story

In the age of take away and coffee-to-go, the entertainment world is ready for an innovation: the pret-a-porter theater. An itinerant theatrical structure, an instant cultural center that appears out of nowhere, disguised as a circus tent.

But make no mistake, for this is not circus. There are no animals to welcome you, nor cotton candy to make your fingers stick. What meets the eye is indeed a marquee, just a tad more special: it is a theater in the leaves. A theater that can be set up on a lawn, in a square or amongst the park trees. An itinerant theater, located in the heart of the city, offers its little world of poetry, time and time again.

Debuto Tendone.jpeg

Four multifaceted artists are the engine of this project. Between them are decades on the scene as clowns, actors, acrobats and years at the service of storytelling through images. They are set designers, authors, directors and street artist always at level with the public.Today they feel ready to take the next step, to give life to a bigger and more ambitious project: no longer to bring only their own shows on stage, but to generate the container in which their own works and other works can be circuited .
To become cultural operators with a proper theater. With a small peculiarity: the theater in question changes address every two weeks and goes where ever the winds may carry it.

Teatro nelle Foglie is composed of
Elena, Marta, Matteo and Nicolas. Four street artists, four circus performers, four clowns, four millers of miles, four event organizers, four friends so reckless as to decide to believe in their dreams.

TnF is a traveling cultural center: a circus tent that hosts shows, workshops, occasions for social gathering.
We believe in theater-circus and scenic arts as a tool for social and cultural transformation.
We believe in the good example that the circus can give to younger people, introducing them to a healthy, participatory and active society.

There are many Italian municipalities that are not equipped with the appropriate infrastructure to offer their population a cultural and artistic program, and this is perhaps one of the elements that leads more and more young people to abandon the provinces to go live in the city, where the entertainment and cultural offer is more accessible. Decentralising culture can be a way to bring the provinces back to life.

Taking inspiration from the traditional circuses that travel from country to country, TnF wants to reinterpret this modality according to current needs.

Thus proposing not only a traveling show, but a complete itinerant cultural space. Carrying along a proposal for cultured entertainment, with real artistic value that speak to young people without falling into the general commercialisation of todays entertainment industry, or giving priority to the artistic and cultural interest of a proposal rather than its ease.



As a little girl, watching the Montecarlo circus on tv,  she asked her mother how to become a trapeze artist. Her mother answered "a circus artist is not something you become, you have to be born in the circus", so at first Marta settles for the most similar thing, artistic gymnastics.


At the age of 18 she enrolled at the Milan Film School as a screenwriter and later graduated from the University of Genoa in Literature. After which Marta moves on to discovers the new world of circus and teaches herself the aerial disciplines, creating a personal and analytical relationship with the tools at hand.

Improving even further her circus techniques in Argentina, Marta comes back to Europe to explore the art of dynamic rope with masters of the highest level and work on the quality of movement thanks to contemporary dance.


With the solo show "ImmaginAria, aerial fantasies", she, now calls herself "Maldimar" and seeks to materialize fantasy to bring it on stage.

Besides performing, Marta co-founded the street theater company "Duo Artemis" and toured alongside the artistic collective with chapiteau "Circo Patuf ". She is in charge of event and art management for "El OttO", a small independent theater and place of creation for circus and scenic arts. The same place of creation where Teatro nelle Foglie's first production came to light, "Ballata d'Autunno".

 Marta Finazzi 



His sharp and desecrating humor aims to amuse adults, but equally seizes to enchant children through the universal language of gestures.

He cleverly uses playback, music and manipulation of objects to mock himself as well as men in general.


Born and raised in the city of Buenos Aires, Nico enters the circus scene at a very young age. Still in high school, when he begins working as a street artist and establishing his very first company in 1998.

From the beginning of his career he predominantly devotes himself to the art of mime and the search for his inner clown. Later, in 2003, “El Niño del Retrete”  presents his foremost solo show, “Cartoon Toylette”.  The show becomes an instant success, allowing him to tour all around the world, explore and participate to  international festivals, thus obtaining various awards in Argentina, Spain, Holland and Germany.

Simultaneously he dedicated himself to the art project “Famiglia Barton", a comical show-concert band, as well as "Caries", an experimental music band with strong theatrical connotations.


At the moment Nico resides between Spain and Italy. In Barcelona he founded and manages a small independent theater called “El OttO”, a place of creation for circus and scenic arts.

In Italy he directs the artistic collective “Circo Patuf”, a contemporary circus company with chapiteau, born in 2009 and now prominent in the Italian scene thanks to the circus theater show “In Alto Mare” debuted in 2015.

 Nicolas Benincasa 



Born during the legendary '80s in a small town in the province of Pordenone, Elena spent the first eighteen years of her life dreaming that one day she would be able to leave and discover the world. Thus when she graduated from high school she moved to Bologna to become a biologist.


But that mission was soon to be interrupted at the Ferrara Buskers Festival when she first met Matteo Mazzei who gave her the courage to give up everything and start conquering her dream; travelling, creating, laughing and making others laugh while doing so.


After attending the Cikus School in Turin together, the company "Nanirossi" was born. Elena continued her training in Switzerland, Belgium and France, specializing in acro techniques, with a strong clownish influence. With the "Nanirossi" she moved on to create several shows including Nanirossi Show, R4 escape for freedom, Boxed Dreams, ...), receiving numerous awards on both national as well as on an international level.


She is now ready to pursue another dream, to have and to hold a traveling circus theater!

 Elena Fresch 


Matteo arrives at the circus by chance in 2000. His desire to always experiment with something new leads him to learn the basics of juggling during his engineering studies in Genoa. The juggling world gives him the chance to discover the universe of street art and contemporary circus.


In 2002, thanks to a fortuitous meeting with Elena Fresch, he abandoned his studies to pursue together the desire to become street artists. In search of a guidance he arrives in Spain where he attends preparatory courses. These will allow him to be admitted to the Vertigo Circus school in Turin in the 2003/2005 biennium.


In the following years he continued his studies all around Europe, specializing in acro techniques. At the same time he cultivates an interest in the art of making others laugh by following several clown internships with some of the best on the scene, including: L. Bassi, P. Byland, P.Radice, P. Nani, J. Johnson, Avner, Sue Morrison, A. Casaca, R. Puccetti, Le Roi Vagabond.


Together with his partner he founded the company "Nanirossi" with whom he has been performing since 2003, creating several street theater shows and contemporary circus performances, including Nanirossi Show, R4 escape for freedom and Boxed Dreams, which has won several awards in Italy and abroad.


Since the beginning of the show, she has been growing the dream of a circus tent ... and magically this is finally realized in 2018 with the meeting of Nicolas, Marta and the project of the Teatro nelle Foglie.

 Matteo Mazzei 

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