Friday, February 13, 2009

L'homme qui rit

Tonight I went to a French play written by Victor Hugo called, L’homme qui rit. The play was performed by a traveling theatre company who set up camp in Aix for two weeks. It was a sad story about a boy who has lived an unfortunate life, and of course it ends in tragedy. The music and acting were great! I had a hard time understanding some of it – the actors were not actually French, they were British, so that might have had something to do with it. Luckily I read the synopsis on wikipedia before I went – gotta love that website.

The ambiance of the play was almost better than the actual play! Shall I set the scene un peu? Imagine freshest, coldest air, in the middle of the woods in southern France on a dark night – and stumbling upon a small and cozy tent filled with rowdy French people and traveling thespians. I almost felt like I was an extra in the movie Chocolat, when the band of gypsies (aka Johnny Depp!) takes Juliette Binoche to the boat party to hang with his fellow gypsies. You walked into a little tent filled with people, with vintage posters for theatre on the wall. There was this crazy man who looked like a character from a movie: he had a huge mustache, darker skin, a newsboy hat, dangly earrings, and a vest. He was serving “vin chaud” and tea to everyone before the show began. The show actually took place in a big tent – and when you walked in you could see the actors getting ready in their makeshift dressing rooms on the side. It was like Moulin Rouge in real life! Afterwards the actor stayed around and talked to us.

Maybe I’ll just stay the summer and travel around France with the theatre gypsies???

Here is a pretty bad picture of an actor getting ready, and sitting next to me is my roomie Lilli and our friend Alex!

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