On circus, slavery and puppetry


I usu­al­ly write about things I see. This month, I’m going to write about things I did not. Attend­ing Les Demoi­selles de Rochefort press night left me a weird feel­ing. It was as if I didn’t need – or want ? – to see any French musi­cals again. Maybe it was too much, too good (?), too crazy, too rich (?), too com­plex (?), too… what­ev­er. I was also very sad when my friend Win­nifred left. So I didn’t see any­thing new since then, won­der­ing if French musi­cal the­ater had a future…

It’s not that there hasn’t been stuff to see. For exam­ple, my friends went to see Cirque Voltige and said that there was a man dressed in leop­ard briefs. For a moment, I felt some inter­est but then I thought « Oh, well, life is a cir­cus and is a man in leop­ard briefs that inter­est­ing ? ». So, as Vel­ma and Rox­ie sang in Chica­go : « I just move on ».

Last month was the open­ing of the big – and I mean BIG – French musi­cal ver­sion of Gone with the wind by pop song­writer Gérard Pres­gur­vic. I know, you, dear for­eign read­ers, must be hor­ri­fied at this idea. I wish I could say you’re right. I wish I could say you’re wrong. But unfor­tu­nate­ly, I wasn’t invit­ed at this show. So all I can do is to leave my imag­i­na­tion wan­der­ing, think­ing about these big black bare-chest­ed slaves, sweat­ing like, well, like slaves. And I hear these men can even break-dance. Oh my ! If I get the chance to see it, I’ll let you know my feel­ings. But I’m sure slav­ery has nev­er looked so good.

Anoth­er thing that left my imag­i­na­tion wan­der­ing is when I heard that open audi­tions were being held for a forth­com­ing French pro­duc­tion of Pup­petry of the Penis (and I promise I won’t make any Vagi­na Mono­logues joke in this col­umn). I nev­er had the chance to see this show. For those of you who don’t know what it is, Pup­petry fea­tures two naked men per­form­ing « shapes » with their gen­i­tals (the Eif­fel Tow­er, the ham­burg­er, the heli­copter…). Is it fun ? I have no idea. But I can tell you I usu­al­ly like my ham­burg­ers big­ger than that. Now, if you know me, you should know that I’m obsessed with musi­cal the­atre. And I was think­ing that it would be a great idea if these guys make a trib­ute to Broad­way. Here are my sug­ges­tions for musi­cal the­atre relat­ed shapes. Think of the Evi­ta for exam­ple (V‑shaped towards the sky). I won’t describe them all and for once leave it to YOUR imag­i­na­tion but don’t these names sug­gest some­thing that would be great for Pup­petry ? Think of the Epo­nine (sad­ly curled up), the Urine­town, the Mam­ma Mia, the Bosom Bud­dies, the I am my own best friend, the Get­ting to know you, the You’re nev­er ful­ly dressed with­out a smile…
And for the Miss Saigon, they can always recy­cle their heli­copter trick.

You see ? Musi­cal the­atre has a future. At least in my bed­room. Open audi­tions start tomorrow.