Photo: Marie-France Coallier The Duty
Directors Philippe Cyr (“What is expected of me”), and Charles Dauphinais (“oak”)
We like to say that in the theatre, every performance is different. An adage takes on its full meaning in these two shows, which, by coincidence, take the poster on march 16, and where an interpreter is invited to ignore any role that he is going to stick to it.
With What is expected of me, Philippe Cyr and Gilles Poulin-Denis have devised a “score viewer” exploring the universal fantasy of the leak.
In the show created at the Stables last year and resumed at the Plant C, the whole of the performance is assumed by a member of the public — on a voluntary basis, which will be selected by vote after a pre-selection. The chosen one is especially called upon to answer questions that are introspective and to invent another life.
“We put on the table, but we don’t know exactly what will happen, described Philippe Cyr. The show is coloured by the person chosen. It is a dizzying, one is very nervous before each performance. It is very weird to say : we don’t know who is going to do the show ! “The duo has yet realized that the majority of people respond” much the same way the process of gratification, in terms of the other, the reporting relationships… One always has the impression that our feelings are so special, but in the end, it is conditioned on the same basis. And choosing a person of the public, we are seeing that tonight in the evening. “
For the director, the exercise calls into question the relationship of the viewer with the representation, its state of passivity. “Even for those who are going to stay in the room, the posture is a little less safe than usual, more impliquante. “And since they have chosen the performer, the spectators have a look is empathy rather than judgment. “Everyone is kind of in the same bath. And each makes the approach also in his head, wondered about his own stance : that is what I would have done or said, me ? “
Stars of an evening
In An oak tree, presented in the intimate venue of the Theatre Prospero, Philippe Robert portrays a hypnotist studying for her number face to an interpreter asked who ” should arrive as blank as possible to the representation.” Peuimporte his age or his gender, puisquel’british author Tim Crouch has been working on the art of suggestion, explains director Charles Dauphinais. Only one person approached refused to embark in this adventure for the blind. Impossible too say no more on this story, which poses a reflection on the theatrical representation. “Everyone must be at the same level [of ignorance]. “
The partition of the partner of an evening where the public will discover only the identity in the representation — is very framed. The guests know that they will not have to improvise. Everything is in writing. According to Dauphinais, the work of Tim Crouch is based on the manipulation. “Not just the actor, but also of the public. “Without really participating, the audience will also receive instructions.
Preparing for the unpredictable
These two shows are repeated with interpreters one-off, different from those who are going to play. The director of the Oak launches a challenge to its lead actor, who must adapt to partners with different profiles.
“We can already see in rehearsals that the play does not resonate the same way with performers of 30 years, with other of 50. “Etselon Charles Dauphinais, the situation makes the performers who discover the text” very hectic, and without protection. A perfect condition to play.” And even if nothing is improvised, the guest can find a great freedom in his interpretation of the character and the relationships he builds with his counterpart. “Until now, each explores something new. It is quite fascinating to see. “
Theoretically, the interpreter temporary could decide to stop the representation ” if he doesn’t want to go in some areas. It is suggested from the start. This is the worst thing that can happen. “
These jumps in the vacuum require, therefore, that designers relinquish a degree of control. This is insecure, agrees Philippe Cyr. “We used to make objects super controlled where you can choose all of the items. It is a bit like that, our work as a stage director. Our reflex is to fine-tune the object. “
The creators of What is expected of me still have the power on several parameters, including a film that they go in direct. But the new version of the show gives a latitude increased to the improvisation of the viewer. “This is fantastic, finally : the encounter that we have done all with this particular person, in a way that we would not otherwise. Leave the place to the meeting [allows] a lot more unexpected and beauty. “
“Sometimes, when everything is decided, or very controlled, it is as if the space of evocation disappeared,” adds Cyr. I find that in the theatre, it is necessary to create white where the spectators can fit, and have a space to imagine. It is like that we can have this dialogue. It is an art of encounter. We are here, together : we must do something. “
Violette Chauveau and jumping into the unknown
Violette Chauveau is one of the brave men who have agreed to participate in the Oak, without knowing anything in advance. The actress is attracted to risk-taking. “I love when I’m afraid, that it is exciting. I’ll try to arrive there fully available. To be relaxed the more possible. To be receptive, totally open and attentive to the situation. It’s like going on a journey, finally, and discover as you go. ”
The exercise requires the abandonment, she said. “The actors with whom I have the most fun on stage, are able to play really in the present moment and return the ball. More with those too stuck in their partition. This is one reason why I accepted : I love those areas where you don’t know what can happen. “And this ability to create a communion with the audience, sharing this space of the present.
During the telephone interview, Violette Chauveau recalls a similar experience : you have replaced an actress ill with the foot raised, in a summer theatre. “I didn’t know the piece. I was in a terrible state. Thanks to the adrenaline, I’ve learned the first scenes by heart very quickly. After I had my text in hand. But it created an interesting effect on the game plan : I was totally in the situation. And I punchais to no end because instead of trying to find all the levels of the stage, I was in the emergency… ”
What is expected of me / A oak
Creation and ideation: Philippe Cyr and Gilles Poulin-Denis. A co-production of 2PAR4 and The Man match. At Usine C, from 13 to 16 march. / Text : Tim Crouch. Directed by: Charles Dauphinais. A production of the Collective and The Stasi. Guests : Paul Ahmarani, Éric Bernier, Violette Chauveau, Normand D’amour, Kathleen Fortin, Tania Kontoyanni, Marie-Ève Milot, Vincent-Guillaume Otis, Danielle Proulx, and Cynthia Wu-Maheux. In the intimate venue of the Theatre Prospero from 13 to 23 march.