“Tragedy serves to put away what scares us” | EUROtoday

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Un Festival of tragedies, in 2024? Essential, at a time when “we need to celebrate humanity in what is most terrifying but also most beautiful: the power of the soul, the sacred energy of feelings”, enthuses Muriel Mayette -Holtz.
The actress and director, first girl to have directed the Comédie-Française of which she was common administrator from 2006 to 2014, now director of the Théâtre nationwide de Nice, wished it and launched it this Wednesday * , outdoor, within the setting from the amphitheater of the Cimiez arenas, with a Phaedra which is especially near his coronary heart. The TNN Festival of Tragedies runs till July 5.

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Muriel Mayette-Holtz: Firstly as a result of there’s none in France and I had the chance to stage The Trojan Women of Euripides in Syracuse just a few years in the past. And these conferences with nice tragic texts are essential. We all want lightness and laughter, but in addition nice feelings, and theater serves to place at bay what scares us, that’s to say the monstrous a part of humanity. It permits us to open our hearts, to the touch the emotional and never the mental a part of the viewer. At a time when the planet goes to struggle on all sides, after we are afraid of the longer term, we additionally have to put History into perspective. And then, the setting of the Roman arenas of Cimiez in Nice requires a competition of tragedies. In this masterful vertical house, you may play below the actual sky. It's transcendent.

You open this primary version with an outside creation: Phaedra, by Racine…

Racine is the quintessence of our French language with the admirable rhythm of Alexandrian which is a form of everlasting slip of the tongue; in his music, we entry the contradictions from inside. Phèdre says for instance: “In the depths of my heart you could not read. » We can also hear “pale”. Phaedra stays a elegant love story. This textual content talks about romantic want, the forbidden and plenty of topics which nonetheless extremely concern our society. And poetry is what’s closest to individuals even when it appears difficult as a result of it’s only emotional and never rational. It can be a collage of phrases. To acceptable it in Phaedra, the present begins with a slam from Jacky Ido, fantastic Théramène, with the intention to convey us into this story earlier than we obtain it with the alexandrine.

You selected a younger girl, Eve Pereur, to play the heroine. Why this bias?

The story of Phèdre, for me, isn’t that of a mature girl who discovers one final love, however that of a younger girl married by default, married with out pleasure or want. She falls in love with a younger man who is similar age as her, and it's heartbreaking to see how this love is feasible and but forbidden. Eve Pereur who performs the heroine is the actress I like essentially the most. She is indomitable, distinctive. She's an animal actress who takes her time incubating the textual content, however as soon as it's accomplished, she renders it in a different way each night. And it's upsetting for a director to not be obeyed, however understood.

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What different highlights does this “meeting of tears”, as you name it, have in retailer?

We could have different nice exhibits together with Helafterfrom the autumn by Simon Abkarian, Our Homer directed by Jacques Bonnaffé or Andromache by Racine by Stéphane Braunschweig, and extra intimate conferences with studying evenings. Tragedy is a part of us all. It is a celebration of life, a information merchandise which turns into exemplary and repeats itself. What fascinates us about it’s the human being's capability for overflow, the truth of struggle on a sentimental degree, the burden of inheritance. The heroes of the mythology that Racine celebrates are heroes stifled by the legacy of their dad and mom, Pyrrhus in Andromache or Hippolyte in Phaedra should stay as much as their future. All these figures have been placed on a pedestal, however deep in our hearts, in our non-heroic lives, they’re near us, as a result of all of us have encounters of this sort.

* Nice Tragedies Festival. From June 19 to July 5, 2024. Information and program: www.tnn.fr/fr/les-temps-forts/festival-de-tragedie