Project

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Rire avec Molière, en cinq actes

English title Laughing with Molière, in Five Acts
Applicant Bourqui Claude
Number 200114
Funding scheme Agora
Research institution Domaine d'études Français Faculté des Lettres Université de Fribourg
Institution of higher education University of Fribourg - FR
Main discipline Romance languages and literature
Start/End 01.08.2021 - 31.01.2023
Approved amount 198'082.00
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All Disciplines (2)

Discipline
Romance languages and literature
Theatre and Cinema

Keywords (6)

Molière; historicity; comedy; laughing; staging; theatre

Lay Summary (French)

Lead
Rire avec Molière invite à faire l’expérience de la dimension historique du rire à une époque où la circulation mondiale d’images et de textes opacifien le fonctionnement des genres comiques. À l’occasion du 400e anniversaire de la naissance de Molière, trois universités (UNIFR, UNIGE et UNIL, par leurs départements de Français et d’Etudes théâtrales), associées à la Radio Télévision Suisse et à six théâtres, mettront en lumière le travail de recontextualisation - scientifique et artistique - nécessaire à l’interprétation des comédies.
Lay summary

Le public qui rit aujourd’hui à la représentation d’une pièce de Molière croit souvent que leur auteur a su peindre les travers d’une nature humaine immuable. Or les travaux les plus récents sur la création des œuvres de Molière et sur l’histoire de leur réception montrent que les publics successifs n’ont pas toujours ri des mêmes situations et des mêmes personnages. Les cinq opérations de Rire avec Molière mettront l’accent sur ce que les œuvres du passé peuvent avoir de dérangeant et de stimulant, en travaillant à la tension entre actualité et inactualité :

1.   Des entretiens radiophoniques avec des metteurs en scène témoigneront des efforts nécessaires à l’actualisation des ressorts comiques.
2.   Un spectacle présentera des variations autour de scènes du Tartuffe susceptibles de faire – ou non – rire le public d’aujourd’hui.
3.   Un atelier, en forme de jeu de rôles, promu dans les théâtres romands permettra de fabriquer sa propre transposition des Femmes Savantes.
4.   Des ateliers destinés aux élèves du secondaire donneront la possibilité d’identifier, autour d’eux, des comportements «dignes de Molière».
5.   Des sketches télévisés proposeront la transposition de motifs empruntés Molière dans la satire de faits d’actualité.

Direct link to Lay Summary Last update: 13.04.2021

Responsible applicant and co-applicants

Employees

Project partner

Associated projects

Number Title Start Funding scheme
143236 Naissance de la critique dramatique 01.09.2013 Project funding (Div. I-III)

Abstract

On the occasion of Molière's 400th anniversary, the project Rire avec Molière, en cinq actes aims to make visible the recent contributions of academic research on the comic dramatist by opening a debate on the historical and aesthetic conditions of laughter.The audience that laughs today at the performance of a play by Molière wants to believe that they are laughing in no other way or at no other things than the playwright's contemporaries, and that the author of L'Avare or Tartuffe knew how to paint the permanent shortcomings of an immutable human nature. At least this is what everyone could - or thought they should - remember from their first encounter with his great comedies, on the school benches, and then find again, from far and wide, from the seats of a theatre. However, the most recent academic works on the creation of Molière's comedies and the long history of their reception have shown that their successive audiences did not laugh at the same scenes, lines, characters or adventures - that they perceived their satirical charge in very different ways, and even that they were not always moved to laughter by the Misanthrope or Les Femmes savantes. By offering several audiences the opportunity to share the results of recent research on the playwright, the project would like to take advantage of the common school knowledge of several generations to invite: 1) to measure the HISTORICAL dimension of comedy and the unstable nature of laughter, at a time when it has become an essential component of entertainment and when it poses acute problems if miscalculated;2) to experiment with the mechanisms of the ACTUALIZATION of classical works, which is at the heart of modern staging practices, and with the very meaning of a negotiation between discordant contexts and times (genesis of the work, first reception, successive interpretations, new interpretation proposal);3)to question the TRANSHISTORICAL and UNIVERSAL ground of Molière's comedy and the nature of the laughter aroused (or not) by the reading or staging of his texts.To make these THREE MESSAGES an experience, five activities have been imagined, in collaboration with professionals in the field of cultural mediation and performance. These FIVE ACTS will take place and be promoted throughout 2022, for Molière's 400th anniversary, with also an original «booklet».ACT I - Radio interviews (on the RTS, Espace 2), with some recent directors of Molière, will focus on a scene which required exceptional efforts on their part to understand and transpose its comic effect (HISTORICAL dimension, mechanisms of ACTUALIZATION);ACT II - A show (created at the Théâtre de La Grange in Lausanne) will present a dozen variations on a situation in the Tartuffe; a documentary film on the creative process involving scientists and artists will be produced as well as a professional recording of the show (TRANSHISTORICAL AND UNIVERSAL ground);ACT III - A mediation module (promoted in six theatres in French-speaking Switzerland) will allow participants to perform themselves, in a playful way, the action of transposing the plot, as for the staging of a comedy by Molière (Mechanisms of ACTUALIZATION);ACT IV - Three school workshops for secondary I and II classes (supported by the mediation services of universities and cantons) will provide the means to grasp and identify the Molière situations in their daily environment (HISTORICAL dimension, mechanisms of ACTUALIZATION); ACT V -Television sketches (on the RTS, RTS Un) will secretly transpose elements of Molière's comedies into current events; video clips will afterward reveal and comment their sources (TRANSHISTORICAL AND UNIVERSAL ground).BookletMolière's discourse on laughter will also be the subject of a widely distributed anthology, aimed in particular at teachers and their audiences. This anthology will be the first to bring together all of Molière's contributions to the debate on comedy in his time (HISTORICAL dimension).
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