Monday, 18 January 2016

Threads of Dramaturgy: José Babin on Le Fil Blanc

“Listen, my love… Listen, my child… Listen to the river…”

There once was a Mountain-Woman, white as snow, who washed away the woes of the world in the waters of a wide river.

One spring day, she heard the cry of wild horses and the noise of chains forced into their noble mouths.

The next day, amidst horrible sounds of metal and fire, the War-Ogre climbed her flanks.

A tale of sound and fury, but of great love
and humanity. Seen through the unusual complicity between a mother and her daughter, this is the story of that spark of life that continues to pulsate its heart beating despite all the horrors endured by a broken land. A mythological tale that is on the side of life…

For this world is desperate for poetry.

What was the inspiration for this performance?
Inhumanity towards women in the name of wars. … every day, still today, in the papers, the web, TV, magazines. But I wanted to treat it in a poetic way, taking the side of life . 

How did you go about gathering the team for it?
José Babin: The musician and the actress playing with me are two long time artistic partners 

How did you become interested in making performance?
From teenage time. I was in a theatre group in school with a very open minded teacher. He kept us from becoming static people who think they can’t realize  their dreams.

Teachers are very important people!

Was your process typical of the way that you make a performance?
Yes, but I always get surprised ! I always start by a research with a theme and some matter.

For Threads, I wanted to work on a duet with Nadine (Walsh) . We worked with boxes, sand  and a violin. The musician works with us from the very first day. It is very inspiring.

This work, confronted with the news of the world, revealed the theme of the show. 

What do you hope that the audience will experience?
A moment out of time, a tale of courage and love told in a surreal way. Beauty against war.

What strategies did you consider towards shaping this audience experience?
Using a scenic approach that proposes a fragmented dramaturgy.
Space, music, light, time and bodies are fragmented, each embodying a detail from the whole canvas.

Audience puts the pieces together and create his own drawing and feeling.

Do you see your work within any particular tradition?
I was trained as a corporeal mime and I guess I use the fundamental principles of Decroux in many was in my work.

Research is at the heart of our work.

Always putting ourselves in danger, for fear of standing still. Always pushing further to meet “the Other”. Digging out the hidden from beneath the obvious. Building a contemporary form of theatre that uses matter to express itself. We dig, we search, we do not imagine ourselves the craftsmen of a knowledge we do not possess. 

At Théâtre Incliné, we aspire to create a holistic stage where, for us, puppeteering not only animates the figures that move on the stage, but also all the links between body, sets, lighting, music — in other words, all of the materials that go into creating a theatrical image. Part of the story being written comes from within the actors, through all of the visuals and sounds that “interact with them”.

Æsthetics play a part in the story. We are never found where we are expected but rather where our research takes us. This is our brand of subversion. Steer clear of something that works if it does not serve the story. Our latest show, Threads, carries the voices of women who have been torn and broken throughout all eternity. 

A sand-coloured mythological tale gave them life, amalgamating women’s bodies with their fragmented limbs and war helmets. Our next project, La morsure de l’ange, explores the mental space of an unbalanced character. Filmed shadows appear alongside projectors, screens and scrap metal. It all comes from within us: the material arises and imposes itself on us during the research periods that precede all of our creations.

José Babin, Artistic Director

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