Istós script

based on the short story “The Listening Deer”, from Salvatore Cambosu’s literary work “Bitter Honey”.

Written by Virginia Garau








Montangesu, Montangesu, (Libeccio, Libeccio)

sona is lizzas in-d u’ cantu (playing heddles like a melody)

cun su toccu ‘e su trobaxiu (with the beating of the loom)

lizzas, mizzas de prantu. (Heddles, spring of tears.)

Lizzas, mizzas de arrisu (Heddles, spring of laughter)

fillus che fius de odrìu (sons of the warp threads)

Sua su bentu ‘e monte Arcuentu (Blows the wind of Mount Arcuentu)

Montangesu. (Libeccio)


Iana: NO! It is not the right time!

My consort has gone hunting, wait until he is back.


no est prus mizza, est unu arriu (It is not a spring anymore, but a river)

unu arriu chi cabada de cea in cea (a river flowing down in meanders)

innui est su sposu miu (where my consort is)

ca abarrai a soba est cosa fea, (for a bad thing is to be alone)

Bentu ‘e sobi, bentu ‘estu (Sirocco, Mistral)

no s’accabba custu odrìu, (this warp does not end)

nareimì innui est su sposu miu, (tell me where my consort is)

bosu chi bideis attesu (you, who can see from the distance)

Wait, I told you not to rush it,

your father will be back soon and then, you,

will be able to brighten our lives.


Caba Cerbu de su monti (Come down from the mountain, Deer)

ogus prenus de dulcura, (full of kindness are your eyes)

fillu nasciu in sa tristura (a son born from tribulation) 

fillu ‘e bentu ‘e Montangesu. (son of Libeccio wind)


Iana: Now heavy and hazy winds blow, a shiver runs down my spine. Bare and knobby branches in this foggy night.

Quiet whispers, a freezing wind comes in, my consort has gone hunting. My consort, please do not be long, my consort, my consort….



Poita ses mudu? Chi ses drummiu scidadindi. (Why are so silent? If you are sleeping, get up!)

Apaxia s’isposa e ascuttadda, ca est prangendi. (Reassure and listen to the bride, for she is crying.)


Angius, angius de su xelu (Angels, angels in the sky) 

in lutu poneis unu telu (in mourning you wear a cloth)

unu telu a lutu e nieddu (a black cloth in mourning)

ca su sposu fiat u’ Betixeddu (for the consort was a Fawn)

ma at gherrau cun d-u’ cerbu mannu (but he fought against an adult)

fillu de su prus Malu Bentu (son of the most evil winds)

Angius, angius de su celu (Angels, angels in the sky)

agiudeis sa sposa in custu turmentu. (please help the bride in this torment)

ma at gherrau cun d-u’ cerbu mannu (but he fought against an adult)

chi sind’est pigau su coru e s’ogu (which stole his heart and eye)

 Angius angius de su celu (Angels, angels in the sky)

 agiudei sa sposa a tenit alluttu su fogu. (please help the bride to keep the fire alive)


Iana: Life has come alongside death. A bad omen brought you before my eyes. I welcome you as a gift from heaven. My life starts over again with yours. I will weave, my children, until the end of the storm. I will weave, my angels, just for you. Grow up, my children. As for me, I will mourn!


*She now recites the last fragment of the holy rosary*


Iana: Hurry up, get ready!

Iana: My children with splendid doe eyes, you, made me a mother.

Sole (*Sun) is your name for you are the sun. Your mother saw the flame of love inside of you! Luna (*Moon), nocturnal and delicate, you, made of light, too! You are Stella (*Star), my shining star!



tzaca su trobasciu (hit the loom)

sorriscedda mia (my little sister)

tzaca prus a foti (hit it harder)

su bentu fai titia (for the wind brings cold) 

tzaca innoi (hit here)

tzaca inguis (hit there)

tzacca imu (hit now)

odrì odriù (weave the warp)


Sole: Mother, please tell us a story. The one about “Suòni”, the evil deer.

Stella: Please don’t, that one scares me!

Luna: What? Come on! So boring!

Iana: At the top of Mount Arcu’ ‘Entu, a vast forest of cork oaks and junipers grew. The inhabitants claimed that, in there, lived a deer, different from all the others: his antlers were not harmoniously curved as almond branches, but were longer, straight and thin as juniper roots.

Sole: What’s juniper?

Luna: Shut up!

Iana: Everyone was convinced that that deer was evil and that he would have killed anyone crossing his path. But not everyone believed in these stories.  One day, Bastiano, a hunter who lived at the foot of the mountain, after a long walk arrived at the top. And there, in the distance, he saw a deer drinking from a pool of water. He immediately crouched down to hide himself and blessed the headwind which protected him. The deer was drinking while listening carefully to the sounds of the forest, on alert. His eyes never stopped moving, and his hooves were pressing the ground, for no reason: it was just driven by anger. Anger for being different, anger for being alone.

Stella: I’m scared!!

Luna: Shut up!

Iana: Bastiano, who was there to find that deer, picked up his rifle, tried to align the sights on his target… and shoot… but he could not, he stayed still. He was not totally sure about it being the deer he was looking for, Suòni. In that precise moment, the deer attentively lifted its head, saw him, observed him and for a moment there, locked its eyes with him….

Sole: Go on, Mother!

Stella: No, please don’t!

Luna: Come on, now it’s getting interesting!

Iana: You are right Luna, here it comes the interesting part! Just by that look, Bastiano and the deer understood each other: do not desecrate my world, I will not desecrate yours. Afterwards, Bastiano looked away for a moment and Suòni suddenly disappeared.

Iana: Remember, my children, what Bastiano learnt that day, and later never forgot! Look around, smell and listen to everything, and then cherish all those things you learnt.

Stella: I’ll take the colours of the forest with me.

Sole: I’ll take the smell of the dye.

Luna: I’ll take the sound of the loom, then.

Iana: Yes, the sound of the loom will never leave you. You will weave and wait, for this is a land where winds easily change, so, one day, that door will be open and Montangesu will be here again.


*Singing: Montangesu, Montangesu…*


*Iana kindly looks at them and starts teaching Luna how to weave. Luna pulls the threads tight but she gets tired of it and begins hitting the loom with some sticks*


Sole: Stop it! Mother doesn’t want us to play with the loom!

Luna: I wasn’t playing. I’m perfectly capable of using the loom, I am!

Stella: So sure about that?! You can’t even recognize its rhythm.

Sole: Come on sisters, clap your hands… the sooner we learn to recognize the rhythm the sooner we can beat with the loom.

Luna: I’m not in the mood, I’m tired…and also… who do you think you are? Mother!!?

Stella: She knows well when we’ll be able to beat with the loom.

Luna: Maybe… but I already know what I’m going to weave: the ballu tundu (traditional Sardinian folk dance which is typically danced in a closed or open circle)


Iana: What about you, what would you like to weave?

Sole: I’ll weave black and red horses.

Iana: And you?

Stella: As for me, I’ll weave a warrior fighting against a deer, as my father did.

Sole: Well then, I’m also going to weave palms, birds, geese and doves.

Luna: Me, then, goblets and keys and hourglasses!

Stella: The eagle and the lion. Donkeys and dogs!

Sole: I’ll weave roses then. The most beautiful and fragrant roses, the reddest and the whitest.  Arrosa arrosa bella, deu seu sa prus bella! (Beautiful, beautiful rose, I’m the most beautiful rose!)

Luna: No est berus, frobascia, deu seu sa prus bella! (You liar, I’m the most beautiful one!)

Stella: Nou, deu seu sa prus bella. Oi tocat a mei! (No, it’s me! Today it’s my turn!)

Sole: Sa prus bella! seu sa prus bella! (The most beautiful, I’m the most beautiful!)

Luna: Insà chi tui ses sa prus bella……deu seu sa prus arrica. seu sa prus arrica, seu sa prus arricca!! (Ok then, if you’re the most beautiful…I’m the richest! The richest, the richest! )

Sole: Nou, seu deu sa prus arrica! (No you’re not, I’m the richest!)

Stella: Ma no iasta nau ca fusti sa prus bella!? (But…you said you were the most beautiful!)

Sole: Eja, ma imoi oll’essi sa prus arrica. antzis sa prus arrichissima! (Yes, but now I want to be the richest…or rather… the most richest!)

Stella: Sa prus arrichissima??? (Sorry? the most richest?? )

Luna: Sa prus arricchissima no si narat. (You know you can’t say the most richest! )


Sole: Silence! Shhh! Can you hear it? One single beat with the loom and the village is not dead anymore!

Luna: Silence! Shhh! Can you hear it? A distant beat is lightly coming, bringing some fresh air from the forest!

Stella: Silence! Shhh! Can you hear it? It’s like a ray of light going into the water, it plunges…but it doesn’t get wet.

Sole/Luna/Stella: Let’s weave sisters, let’s weave…

Iana:  Come on, keep the loom rhythm alive! May this ancient symphony reach the ear of your future consorts!

Sole/Luna/Stella: Let’s weave sisters, let’s weave…

Iana:  Come on, keep the loom rhythm alive! For you too, my children, a consort who will take you away from me is coming! Keep on beating, so that this tradition can be taught!

Sole/Luna/Stella: Let’s weave sisters, let’s weave…

Iana:  Come on, keep the loom rhythm alive! Lions to give you the strength! The ballu tundu to develop stamina! Strongboxes and hidden caves to keep the faith safe ! And finally, three roses.

Sole/Luna/Stella: And then, we’ll be brides!


Sole: Mother, please tell us the story of our father. When you tell that story your face transforms, your eyes turn into the colour of the forest.


Luna and Stella: Come on mother, please!

Iana: No…

Luna and Stella: Oh, please, come on!

Iana: The sun was setting…

Sole/Luna/Stella: The sun was setting….

Iana: A hot and golden evening in autumn embellished my path along the road which brought me home from the river. I was carrying my wet laundry and suddenly…

Sole/Luna/Stella: …horses…sound of hooves!

Iana: He appears, riding his bay horse.

Sole/Luna/Stella: Oh my God! Foghesu! (*In Sardinian language: from the village of Perdas de Fogu)

Iana: He stops in front of me. His eyes, as beautiful as deer’s eyes. He offers to pick up my laundry back to the village.

Luna: “A woman alone after sunset… ?”

Sole/Stella: Nooooo!

Iana: He dismounts from his horse and two, strong hands lift me up to get on. This first picture of us is stuck in my mind: our clear shadows, silhouetted against the road, already scented by night dew.

Sole: And then?

Iana: And then…

Stella: I want a man who lifts me up with those strong hands too!

Luna/Sole: What about us?

Iana: Soon… A man will come for you, you and you! Three men, who will take you away from me.

Sole/Luna/Stella: Nooo! Yes?!!

Iana: When in the forest a deer will be listening hidden in the branches, and when ray arrows hurled from the sky will touch the subtle sounds of the forest, men’s shadows will appear. When it happens, you will leave.

Sole: Mother, why?

Iana:  Shhh!! I can sense their steps. I can smell them. Those distant voices, my heart is throbbing.

Luna: Ours are throbbing as well, Mother!

Iana: No. Yours are treasure chests full of gems and precious, ancient fortunes. Far away, where you will move, you will discover other precious and ancient fortunes: only then, you will open your treasure chests and those fortunes will sparkle among others.

Stella: And how do we know when the right moment comes?

Iana: When my voice will be echoing, travelling from branch to leaf, from path to stream, from hill to plain, and reach you: only then the chests will open up. And with a deep breath you will give shape to everything you learnt and left.

Sole: What if we forget everything?

Luna:  It’d be horrible!!

Stella: An abomination!!

Iana: You cannot forget. Everything can be only cherished or maybe hidden for a while! But do not worry, fairies will be there to help you remember.

Sole/Luna/Stella: Fairies!!? Mother, fairies aren’t real!

Iana:  They are not!!? They are real! They live. You are fairies.

Sole/Luna/Stella: Are we?

Sole: I knew it!

Luna: But fairies do magic!

Stella: We’re fairies, I can prove it! That piece of bread, do you remember? It disappeared!

Sole: Which one?

Stella: The one I put on the sweet-scented strawberry tree bush.

Luna:  Ah, the one you put on the sweet-scented strawberry tree bush.

Stella: Exactly.

Luna:  Ah, that piece of bread with honey!!?

Stella: Yes, exactly. I prepared it for the deer, but it disappeared in an instant. I thought it was kind of magic, but maybe it was me, unintentionally.

Luna: It was strawberry tree honey, wasn’t it?

Stella: Yes.

Luna: Bitter honey.

Stella: Yes, bitter honey. Does it matter?

Sole: It does, it does!

Stella: But…but…it was you, right? You did eat that bread!


Sole: Let’s play a game! Let’s invent a story to tell Mother!

Stella: Yeees!!

Luna: You start!

Sole: I’m going to tell the story about tzia (aunt) Filumena…

Stella/Luna: Tzia Filumena…!!!?

Sole: Tzia Filumena and her female cat!

Stella/Luna: Ah….the cat!!!

Sole: Tziu (uncle) Doddore was a pond fisherman…

Stella/Luna: Fisherman???!!!

Sole: Yes, a fisherman. He was a little over the hill when he met tzia Filumena…. They married and he brought her from Ogliastra to a small village called…called?

Luna: Marceddì.

Sole/Stella: Marceddì??

Luna: Near Oristano!

Sole: Yes, yes. They lived there their whole life. He fished and she… she…

Stella: …….she wove, she wove carpets using the hand loom.

Sole: At the bottom of the loom stood a red female cat with two fire red eyes… her name was Agatàda…… Agatàda stood outside, on the windowsill…

Stella: Poor little one! She always stood there, all alone?

Luna: What a crybaby you are, Stella!!!

Sole: Shut up, you two! Agatàda at every beat of the loom cunningly narrowed her eyes and started purring…happily!

Stella: What a strange cat! She likes the loom and even my carpets!

Sole: Of course! Because Agatàda is not a cat!

Sole/Luna:  Sorry???

Sole: She’s a Jana (*Sardinian forest fairy)!

Stella: I’m a Jana!


Iana: Please do not fight! Come here!

Stella: I wanted to be a Jana! And also, she made my bread disappear!

Iana: Fairies of your kind do not do this kind of magic. Made an object disappear is easier than keeping it safe and passing it on over generations.

Stella: What do you mean, Mother?

Iana: For instance: do you like nuraghe Cuccurada?

Sole: Yes, Mother, we’ve been there many times.

Stella:, do you remember that time while we were playing hide and seek and you got lost? You cried all night long.

Luna: Annoying as always.

Stella: I don’t remember at all. But I recall that time when we started a competition to see which one of us could throw rocks the furthest, from the top of the nuraghe and I won! Yes! One rock arrived up to Mount Arcu’ ‘Entu!

Luna: Oh come on!

Luna/Sole: You went too far!

Iana: I was saying… nuraghe Cuccurada is there to tell a story, and as long as it stays intact, it will keep telling and witness this story. For the marks left by the time recall the very first mark they originated from. Leave a mark is more difficult than erase it. But you, my children, you will achieve this purpose. Do you remember? Look around, smell and listen to everything, and then cherish all those things you learnt.

Sole/Luna/Stella: Look around, smell and listen.

Sole: The scent of the sea… my consort’s coming from the sea. He’s as strong as the sea and as bright as the sun.

Stella: The sea, even bigger than the deer’s forest. So big, so big that even the vigorous eagle can’t cross!

Sole: No, it can’t, but my consort can!

Luna: My consort’s proud! And he’ll go inside the forest, deer hunting! But in that same forest he’ll find a Doe waiting for him!

Stella: Mine is coming on horseback, following the northern star! But he’s going to find an even bigger heartwarming star!

Sole: They’re coming, can you hear them?

Iana: If you are going to be fortunate, a deer for each of you will step in from that door. And if he comes from a far away land, he will take you far away from here, among foreign people and costumes, in order to learn the ancient arts of weaving and seduction, in new and different ways.

Sole/Luna/Stella : We’re ready.

Iana: And You, brides from distant places, sit before Your own loom, You are going to remember our story so that You will not be lost!

Sole/Luna/Stella : And we won’t be lost.

Iana: Yes, for the loom, made of wood and threads, will always remind us who we are and where we come from!

The End




Teatro Tragodia, based in Mogoro at the Theatre “Fabbrica delle Gazzose”, has been operating for over 30 years in the theatrical and education field, with particular attention to Sardinian culture identity themes and to a reinterpretation of popular theatre in which words and gestures are analyzed and redefined.


L’Effimero Meraviglioso born in 1991 in Sinnai. From that point on it keeps putting forward a project of a vital theatre, able to instill emotions and ideas, thus working on the body, words, images, sounds and collaborating with actors and theatrical operators from many places and experiences. 

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Ditta Luigi Spano has been offering its skills for over 20 years, to give a quality technical support, from the equipment to the design of the most technical aspects of the show. It mainly deals with concerts, music events, and theatrical shows from all over the island.


Comune di Mogoro
Comune di Cabras
Comune di Mamoiada
Gal Marmilla
GAL Barbagia
Museo MAMU
Penisola del Sinis
Fiera dell'Artigianato
Nuraghe Cuccurada
Cantina di Mogoro
Blue Marlin
Sardegna Immaginare

Artists and Artisans

Andrea Loddo
Carol Rollo
Gigi Cabiddu Brau
Massimo Perra
Su Trobasciu
Mariantonia Urru
Isabella Frongia
Giovanna Chessa
Speranza Ladu

Contact us


Dott.ssa Stefania Pusceddu

328 7134 740


via Gramsci 33, Mogoro

347 9221 280


Teatro Civico, via della Libertà snc, Sinnai

070 765 831



328 0721 180

349 6747 534

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Il progetto Memory Wefts è finanziato dal Bando IdentityLAB_2 Annualità 2018 “Sostegno finanziario alle imprese operanti nel settore culturale e creativo per lo sviluppo di progetti di internazionalizzazione nei mercati interessati ai beni, servizi e prodotti culturali e creativi della Sardegna”  POR FESR 2014-2020 Azione 3.4.1 – Codice Unico di Progetto (CUP) E74J19000170007.

Scheda tecnica di progetto