Maria Clementina Cumani was born in Milan, Lombardy, Italy on May 20, 1908. She was active as a dancer from the mid and was a student of Jia Ruskaja. Author of her own original choreographies, she decided very early to dance interpreting only compositions of her own creation.
In June she met the poet [1901-1968], who fell in love with both her elegant beauty and her lively artistic talent. They had a son, [1939- ]. After troubled and alternating events, Cumani married the poet in . Cumani was essentially the poet’s muse, and above all a precious collaborator: she would have helped Quasimodo in the translation of the Greek lyrics but above all of Neruda’s poems. After a complex and torturous married life, the two legally separated in . His son Alessandro, then twenty-one, was entrusted to his mother.
She was also very active as a film actress where she participated in films such as (1965), , (1969), , (1978) by , and other important films directed by directors such as , the and . Although she was long separated from her husband, she used the surname Quasimodo in many cases.
In she published a critical essay on dance, followed by a collection of poems . After a long artistic break, in which she devoted herself to teaching, Cumani returned to dancing: in she was the first dancer in the opera by , staged by at .
In , a few months before her death, a volume was published by Spirali that collects diary pages, letters addressed to Quasimodo and poems by Cumani with the title . Finally, in , thanks to her son Alessandro, a collection of her poems was published posthumously by the publisher Nicolodi, entitled .
CUMANI, Mary C. (aka Maria Quasimodo) (Maria Clementina Cumani) [5/20/1908, Milan Lombardy, Italy – 11/22/1995, Milan, Lombardy, Italy] – dancer, theater, film, TV actress, author, poet. married to poet Salvatore Quasimodo [1901-1968] (1948–1960) mother of actor Alessandro Quasimodo [1939- ].
I Do Not Forgive... I Kill! – 1967 (Maria)