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© Pedro Ruiz

Pôle sud : documentaires scéniques

Anaïs Barbeau-Lavalette + Émile Proulx-Cloutier

Their names are Serge, Jacqueline, Johanne. In reinvented documentary theatre, they reveal their extraordinary experiences and improbable destinies in the Centre Sud neighbourhood.


Jacqueline, a former stripper. Serge, a welder-artist. Johanne, former drug addict. They live in the Centre Sud neighbourhood of Montreal. Onstage, the contours of a teenager’s room or of a high school, places that hold the memory of their past and their intimacy. Reinventing the codes of documentary theatre with cinematic narration, Anaïs Barbeau-Lavalette and Émile Proulx-Cloutier sketch a few sublime portraits with palpable tenderness.

There are eight of them. Eight anonymous individuals with extraordinary pasts now together in a discreetly unusual neighbourhood. They have lived improbable lives between the Radio Canada/CBC tower and the festive fragrances of the gay village. At the invitation of the theatre Espace Libre located a few blocks away, they reveal themselves in a staging anchored initially in audio that becomes a delicate mise en scène of the human presence. A powerful docudrama, Pôle sud… is a reminder how any destiny, even the seemingly most insignificant, is always deeply moving.


Produced by Anaïs Barbeau-Lavalette + Émile Proulx-Cloutier
Research and interviews Anaïs Barbeau-Lavalette
Direction, conception, editing Émile Proulx-Cloutier
On stage Serge Blais + François Julien + Johanne Larose + Mélissa Michaud + Vanessa Michaud + Cybèle Pilon + Marc Ouimet + Jacqueline Vigneault
Sound operators Martyne Morin + Catherine Van Der Donck in association with Jocelyn Lauzon
Conception sonore Nicolas Basque + Ilyaa Ghafouri
Interviews edited by Michel Cordey in association with Mélanie Chicoine + Mathieu Arsenault
Music Mathieu Désy + Émile Proulx-Cloutier
Decor, costume design and props Karine Galarneau
Lighting design Lucie Bazzo
Lighting design Assistant Catherine Fournier-Poirier
Technical director, video and sound manager Dominic Dubé
Researcher Annette Gonthier
Assistant Director Catherine Comeau

Presented with the support of Espace Libre in association with Rencontres internationales du documentaire de Montréal

Written by Philippe Couture
Translated by Neil Kroetsch

Premiered at Espace Libre, Montreal, on May 10, 2015


© Véro Boncompagni + Eva-Maude

Anaïs Barbeau-Lavalette + Émile Proulx-Cloutier (Montreal)

One of the most talented couples on the Quebec arts scene, Anaïs Barbeau-Lavalette and Émile Proulx-Cloutier shine as solo artists, he as an actor and singer-songwriter, she as a filmmaker and novelist.

Full biography