A very famous character of that time, known as "Bacì u Curnajùn" (G. Battista il Cornacchione).
Actually his name was Adriano Lombardini, born in Sanremo in 1885 and died in 1957. He became very famous in the city for his vein as a maccchiettist, singer, dialectal actor and incomparable joker.
Together with other artists of the time he had created a musical group that performed for the guests of the big hotels or the Casino, or on the occasion of weddings and other celebrations, also covering the role of singer being in possession of a sung voice.
There were many anecdotes circulating about him, some of which were authentic and some of which were invented. One of the most famous tells of when, pretending to be an expert healer, he "cured" in his own way the calluses of a certain Don Lasagna, making him keep for a couple of kings his feet immersed in a basin containing a thick "miraculous" mud which was actually quick-setting cement: it is easy to imagine the effect it had, especially on the mood of the unlucky religious man.
Another time, while passing through the market square, he saw a farmer trying in vain to convince a donkey to tow a heavy cart; he leaned over the animal and whispered to him: "Au meschin ch'u porta u bastu u mugugnu u ghe tèn pastu, perché stu güstu de mugugnà u gh'ence a pansa ciü che u mangià" (To the poor man who is forced to bring the basto, protests replace the meal, because the pleasure of grumbling fills his stomach more than the food). The donkey, perhaps having understood and appreciated these words so full of understanding, resignedly set off again, pulling his load.
The peak of his success was reached when in 1930 he played the leading role of Mastr'Antò u basté, (Mastro Antonio costruttore di basti), in the first edition of the famous dialectal comedy "U Ciaravüju" (La chiassata), written by Gin De Stefani and Vincenzo Jàcono. Later he wore women's clothes with unmatched success to play the role of Bigin Sciacastrasse (Brigida Schiacciastracci) in some comedies still written by Jàcono.
A character of other times, who was able to express the character of the people of Sanremo with an incredible series of spots and memorable interpretations.
(News and images taken from "Sanremando" by F. D'Imporzano- R. Lupi and from "... Noma du Treatu" by F.Colt, B.Monticone, M.Scolesi, V.Venturi).