Suite N°3

After Suite N°2 which orchestrated action-words (spoken words that prompted or meant actions), Suite N°3 is about the effects that spoken words have on us, and in particular their undesirable effects. In our daily lives, we are overwhelmed by utterances that we would prefer not to hear, that disgust us, bother us, repulse us, make us angry, depress us, shock us, embarrass us, annoy us, or make us feel sorry for their issuers. What do we do with them? What strategies do we adopt to keep them at a distance? Can theatre and music allow us to neutralise them, to momentarily ward off their violence, to change and deepen the way we consider them?

With the help of a group of correspondents across all of Europe, Encyclopédie de la parole has endeavoured to search for recent recordings of spoken words that, for various reasons and to varying degrees, we are reluctant to listen to: condescending sermons, safety instructions, hate speech, embarrassing claims, verbal abuse, monologues of solitude, police brutality, nationalistic poems, standardised job interviews, counselling, public humiliation, adolescent moaning … We have selected 26 of them in the 24 languages of the European Union.

As with Suite N°1 and Suite N° 2, these utterances are faithfully re-enacted by two performers in order to render their oral dimension and all their melodic, rhythmic, intensive and timbral nuances. Re-enacting them is a way to make their reality audible whilst transposing them into the fictional setting of a theatre.

However, this time we have decided to add an explicitly musical dimension to them: for each of these ‘unlistenable’ words we have added a piano accompaniment which makes them sound like folk songs, opera recitatives, French melodies, German lieds, Portuguese fados, pop hits or contemporary pieces. At times, the piano implicitly reveals an unexpected chorus; at times it highlights the melody or the rhythmic cadence of the words. Sometimes it imposes a disconcerting tone or even cuts loose from its accompanying function to become a competing voice. In all cases, it shifts the act of listening to an unexpected and paradoxical place.

For make no mistake, by staging and putting problematic words to music, we are engaging in a joyous exorcism, an attempt to free ourselves from the influence and the venom of forked tongues.

  • Conception : Encyclopédie de la parole
  • Composition and direction : Joris Lacoste
  • Composition and music : Pierre-Yves Macé
  • Cast : Denis Chouillet (piano), Bianca Iannuzzi and Laurent Deleuil (singers)
  • Artistic collaboration : Elise Simonet
  • Staging intern : François Bourrier
  • Light design : Florian Leduc
  • Sound : Stéphane Leclercq
  • Choreography : Lenio Kaklea
  • Costumes : Ling Zhu
  • Languages : English, French, Dutch, German, Portuguese, Hungarian, Spanish, Polish, Croatian, Danish, Maltese, Italian, Gaelic, Romanian, Czech, Slovak, Finnish, Bulgarian, Swedish, Greek, Estonian, Latvian, Lithuanian, Slovenian
  • Collecting coordinators : Joris Lacoste, Valérie Louys, Marion Siéfert, Elise Simonet
  • Invited archive collectors : Christa Antoniou (CY), Zsolt Boros (HU), Tamara Bracic Vidmar (SL), Rita Bukauskaite (LIT), Ida Daniel (BUL), Milena Ilieva (BUL), Pierre Daubigny (POL), Ania Szczepanska (POL), Glen Falzon (MT), Antoine Cassar (MT), Nicole Genovese (FIN), Kim Jeitz (LU), Genevieve Leyh (ENG), Lenka Luptakova (SK), Shane Mansfield (GLA), Barbara Matijevic (HR), Olivier Van Nooten (NL), Daniel Naami (NL), Federico Paino (IT), Ruta Pakalne (LV), Alise Bokaldere (LV), Birgit Peeters (BE), Tomás Pereira Ginet-Jaquemet (ES), Sergiu Popescu (RO), David Roenner (SE), Brigitte Schima (AT), Soren Stecher-Rasmussen (DK), Maia Means (DK) and Sotiris Vasiliu (GR)
  • Thanks to: Nikola Bencova (CZ), David-Alexandre Gueniot (PT), Patricia Almeida (PT), Anneke Lacoste (NL), Nuno Lucas (PT), Marie Pullerits (EST), Raquel Rodrigues da Costa Gomes de Sousa (PT)
  • Partners for collecting workshops : Teatro Municipal do Porto, Festival Baltoscandal (Rakvere)
  • Language coaches : Kim Andringa, Zsolt Boros, Rita Bukauskaite, Pierre Daubigny, Nicole Genovese, Hanna Hedman, Milena Ilieva, Lénio Kaklea, Nuno Lucas, Christa Antoniou, Barbara Matijevic, Nele Suisalu, Bara Prochaskova, Sergiu Popescu, Kristine Borodina, Sarka Vancurova and Ania Szczepanska
  • ‘ Production and administration Echelle 1:1 / Edwige Dousset assisted by Justine Noirot
  • ‘ Project development, production and distribution Ligne Directe / Judith Martin & Marie Tommasini
  • Production : Echelle 1:1 (with the support from Ministère de la Culture et de la Communication / DRAC Ile- de-France) in partnership with Ligne Directe
  • Coproduction : Kunstenfestivaldesarts – Brussels, Théâtre de la Ville – Paris, Festival d’Automne à Paris, La Comédie de Reims – CDN / Festival Reims Scènes d’Europe, Sao Luiz Teatro / Festival Alkantara – Lisbon, festival NEXT / Le phénix scène nationale de Valenciennes, Théâtre Garonne, scène européenne – Toulouse, Festival Baltoscandal – Rakvere, Gothenburg Dance and Theatre Festival, L’apostrophe, scène nationale de Cergy-Pontoise et du Val d’Oise, Künstlerhaus Mousonturm
  • With the help of : the French Institute in Paris, Ville de Saint-Denis – Conservatoire de musique et de danse, Nanterre-Amandiers – Centre dramatique national and CND Centre national de la danse, residency
  • Suite N°3 is co-produced with : the support of House On Fire and NXTSTP and European Union’s Cultural Programme