Chante avec moi
People used to find communion in religion, and later in mass political movements. Now we all sing in harmony, to the bitter end.
There is nothing anonymous about them. They are not a faceless crowd swarming the boards, but individuals – a real community – taking over the stage to spontaneously create before our eyes a song that, like the sirens’ song, attracts people of all classes and cultures, people who then make it their own, enriching it further in a blaze of fullness and universal harmony. The song will not die for it now has its own life. It becomes an insidious power, loved to death.
The amazing Olivier Choinière, the author of Félicité and the creator of surprising theatrical walkabouts, has assembled 50 actors to present a strange, disturbing fable, a musical comedy that is radiant and enthusiastic and ripe with the utopia of a collective communion, but one that is transformed into nightmarish conditioning that crushes those who so innocently created it.
PRODUCED BY L’ACTIVITÉ
WRITTEN AND CO-DIRECTED BYOLIVIER CHOINIÈRE
CO-DIRECTED BY ALEXIA BÜRGER
WITH MARIE BERNIER + DELPHINE BIENVENU + SABRINA BISSON + JEAN-GUY BOUCHARD + DANY BOUDREAULT + PHILIPPE BRAULT + JULIE CARRIER-PRÉVOST + SIMONE CHEVALOT + GUILLAUME CHOUINARD + FABIEN CLOUTIER + ANNIE DARISSE-DESBIENS + DANIEL DESPUTEAU + ÈVE DURANCEAU + ÉRIC FORGET + MARIE-MICHELLE GARON + DAVID GIGUÈRE + ÉMILIE GILBERT + MATHIEU GOSSELIN + JOHANNE HABERLIN + KEVIN HOULE + GUILLERMINA KERWIN + ÈVE LANDRY + CHRISTIAN LAPORTE + JUSTIN LARAMÉE + MILÈNE LECLERC + VALÉRIE LE MAIRE + PIERRE LIMOGES + MATHIEU MARCIL + FRANÇOIS MARQUIS + ANDRÉ MORISSETTE + IANNICKO N’DOUA + EMMANUELLE ORANGE-PARENT + FRÉDÉRIC PAQUET + CHRISTIAN PERRAULT + MICHELINE POITRAS + ISABEL RANCIER + PHILIPPE ROBERT + DANIEL ROUSSE + BRIGITTE SAINT-AUBIN + INES TALBI + 10 OTHER PERFORMERS + A SPECIAL GUEST SINGING EACH NIGHT
MUSIC DIRECTION PHILIPPE BRAULT
CHOREOGRAPHY LINE NAULT
LIGHTING DESIGN ERWANN BERNARD
WRITTEN BY PAUL LEFEBVRE
TRANSLATED BY NEIL KROETSCH
OLIVIER CHOINIÈRE (MONTRÉAL)
Restoring the Present to the Present
Olivier Choinière has established a reputation as one of the most innovative figures in Quebec theatre with his remarkable writing – works such as Félicité (2007), presented in England, France, Germany, Switzerland and Australia – and the originality of his staging of plays like Chante avec moi (2010) and ParadiXXX (2009), which featured live dubbing of a porno film. Preoccupied with the invisible codes of mass culture and its attendant social and political conditioning, Choinière aims in his work to divert and twist familiar forms in order to show spectators the filters that prevent them from accessing the present.
Borrowing from B movies (Agromorphobia, 2001), familiar history (Autodafé, 1999) and audioguided tours (Bienvenue à – (une ville dont vous êtes le touriste), 2005), he focuses on destabilizing the expectations of the audience in order to redefine his perception of reality. In 2000 he founded L’Activité Répétitive Grandement Grandement Libératrice (ARGGL, or L’Activité) to produce his more atypical work, including the meteorological tragedy Jocelyne est en dépression (2002), the walkabout Beauté intérieure (2003) and Projet blanc in 2011, a comment on theatre and staging of the classics craftily slipped into a performance of L’École des femmes at Théâtre du Nouveau Monde. Olivier Choinière and L’Activité are co-founders of Aux Écuries, a new centre of theatre creation in Montreal.