The town of Sortino, on the southeastern side of the island near Siracusa, offers the traveler a delightful opportunity to see and experience the wide-eyed wonder of puppets. Museo dell’Opera dei Pupi is in the monastery of St. Francis. Puppeteer Gianfranco Salonia is in possession of the collection of the late Ignazio Puglisi. One of Sicily’s finest puppet masters.
The museum is divided into theme rooms. The puppets convey mythical and archetypical tales of monsters that haunt the mind and spirit. The stories also present historical fiction in a dramatic theatrical format. The Battle of Orlando is passed down the generations and known as the Song of Roland, telling an ancient tale of a commander in Charlemagne’s army fighting off the Saracens in Spain. Roland dies in battle and is found by Charlemagne among the dead. This story takes place in 778 AD. The puppets carry forward ancient stories of battles and glory.
The hours are posted but it may be wise to call before arrival. A visit to the museum via YouTube. Video by Filippo Briguglio May 2013.Address: Piazza San Francesco, 96010 Sortino, Sicily, Italy