Facéties / Pierrot
It is with the famous scene where Pierrot dies after cutting his strings that Compagnie Philippe Genty first encountered fame in France, at Casino de Paris, at the Bobino theatre, and on television.
"In order to be invisible, a puppet's strings are generally black. The strings of my Pierrot, who I have just finished making, are white and clearly visible. On stage, the spotlight opens on his kneeling body, curved into the foetal position. He gets up slowly, savouring these first instants of life, and takes a few dance steps. Then he sees me next to him. He is curious about his strings, he takes one, then two, realising that they control his limbs. He stares far off into the distance, realising that he is dependent on me. He turns away from me before tearing his strings out one by one and collapsing to the floor...
On a very poignant score by François de Roubaix and Bernard Maître, combining simplicity and the acoustic sound of the flute with the abstract sound of the synthesiser, Pierrot tours the world. He performs in theatres, as well as frequently on television, in Europe, in the USA, in Asia and in Australia.
Before a performance to autistic children, the nurses warn me of their probable lack of reaction, informing me that most have never expressed any emotion. When the dislocated Pierrot falls to the ground, the stunned nurses discover one of the children crying silently.
With Pierrot, I have the impression that I have opened a new drawer, by discovering the impact of the image-metaphor on these territories and pain that we have repressed in our personalities.
This is also the year when we reached a new milestone. The Theatre de la Ville opened a new showing at 6 pm, inviting cabaret and music-hall artists. For the first time we play a show there. Entitled Facéties, it is a succession of sketches including Les Autruches and Le Pierrot, whose photo adorns the poster advertising the show..."
Paysages intérieurs, pp. 94-97, © Actes Sud