Jacques Vincey in his new opus relies on what has long occupied his theater and what would become an articulation between the flesh and the word. In an indecisive and therefore flamboyant dialectic between stage and audience, he and his troupe of superb actors take us for a walk for our greatest pleasure until November 13 at the Olympia Theatre.
Jacques Vincy, Director of Olympia, CDN de Tours, created The Merchant of Venice ; he knows well the parable of Hamlet: A man can fish with the worm that has eaten the king, and eat with the fish that has eaten the worm. The body feeds on other bodies. The flesh dictates its own law, the law of nature and biology, and words fight destruction and collide with this flesh to name and explain the world.
Grammar of mammals
William Pellier has been writing since 1984. He is the author of a dozen theater texts and several short stories that oscillate between essays and fiction. Heterogeneous in form and plot, his theater most often depicts characters struggling with language, as if lost in anticipation of a denouement. However, this tragic metaphor of existence is filled with humor and irony. His game, mysterious, Mammal Grammar, says nothing directly. It vaguely awakens in everyone something unnamed. The work, conceived as primarily a delightful board game, is looking for flesh and word to get as close as possible to the point of contact.
William Pellier’s text looks like a dead end, or rather, a long winding road that strives to take us nowhere. The point, if it exists, is to uncover the grammar of mammals, that is, to understand to describe it, how language cuts through flesh to animate it as well as limit it. The work consists of three parts. In the first movement, it seems to us a formless mosaic of a picture, about which everyone would completely lose knowledge. The behavior of mammals in this human comedy is determined by principles that elude them. The multiplication of individual stories prevents the construction of a common narrative in favor of a frank disclosure of raw humanity, humanity that appears as if by magic and, moreover, among the characters and the room, in the representation itself. .
The text is not literal. It takes a surrender of our understanding to go there by agreement in unpublished, untranslatable words. And the troupe accompanies us in this worldly novice.
The power of the gesture invented by Jacques Vincey lies in this agreement. Grammar of mammals purely theatrical. The text is revealed only when it is spoken and spoken. The theatrical production is essential for him, a necessary condition for the circulation of signifiers. The frames seem precise, but the improvisation is constant. The troupe is building a landscape for our walk. It colonizes the space, the stage and the auditorium (seats are placed on the stage). There is a natural complicity between the actors and the audience. Neither the detachment nor we ourselves are called to understanding. Actors scream, dance, sing, offer their voices, their bodies, sometimes their nakedness; they don’t seem to understand as much as we do. With joyful contagion, they convey to us the active principle of the play: the energy of explanation, the thirsty curiosity. Alexandra Blaiovici, Garance Degos, Marie Depourterre, Cécile Fayet, Romain Gy, Tamara Lipchitz, Nance Mérieux, Hugo Küchel give themselves body and soul to this wandering, this rally, this journey, this pilgrimage, to this Anything the indescribable, which simultaneously embodies and symbolizes a plural and common humanity.
Jacques Vincy explains: The internal structure of this text-score is supported by its plastic, choreographic and musical organization. Thomas Lebrun and Vanasai Khamphommala help me uncover the lines of subterranean forces in this grammar that the mammalian actors will rub against like the bars of a cage that needs to be broken.
At the end of the gesture, we will see the bars of this cage, the cage of the symbolic law, this grammar that unifies our lives and gives meaning to what we are without it: aggregates of biodegradable matter.
An exceptional work is joyful, it invigorates and galvanizes.
Grammar of mammals William Pellier Jacques Vincey until November 13th at the Olympia Theatre-CNDT-Tours. Information and booking here
Photo courtesy ©Christophe Raynaud de Lage.