Sunday, September 23, 2012

Review: (Quebec City) Tout ce qui tombe

Steve Gagnon (photo credit: Vincent Champoux)

Love, hope, words and decisions
Falling falling falling...falling down, falling to pieces, falling...and getting up again
by Isabelle-Ann Charlebois

Le Trident’s first play of the season gives us a very moving première from Véronique Côté - her first dramatic text - and a co-production with les Fonds de Tiroirs. Tout ce qui Tombe, directed by Frédéric Dubois, Artistic Director of des Fonds de Tiroirs, invites us to think about where we stand in our own lives, where we are heading, or where we’d like to be....questions, questions, questions, always putting our lives into perspective.

Côté’s play which I thought would have been a light and funny one, instead had weight with a pinch of German. It's four stories, three eras, one place: Berlin, Germany.

The German essence of the play becomes clear.  Bach's St. Matthew Passion envelops the play.

Sophie (Édith Patenaude) and Marco’s (Steve Gagnon) story takes place in 2009.  This story is one that is full of explosions in the calmness. In their brilliant acting the two show how communication is so important and yet so difficult. We sway between Marco who is gradually losing his sense of hearing and Sophie’s will to be heard. Patenaude shows us once again her wonderful wild side and fieriness - she is superb and sexy.

Christophe, Charlotte and Marie are a love triangle in 1999. This story could be summarized as finding who your heart belongs to. Charlotte (Marie-Hélène Gendreau), a German and Christophe (Olivier Normand), a Quebecker, are a couple. Christophe wants desperately to have a baby, Charlotte cannot give him one. This tears them apart.  Marie (Catherine-Amélie Côté), also a Quebecker, shows up one day and turns their life upside down. Olivier Normand once again delivers in spades. 

The most unbearable situation and era of all four is certainly Moritz (Benoit Maufette) and Rose’s (Julianna Herzberg).  1989. The Berlin Wall. To cross it or not to cross it. Fear and courage are intertwined throughout this part of the playRose and Moritz’s lines are in German (with French surtitles).  The German essence of the play becomes clear.  Bach's St. Matthew Passion envelopes it.

All the actors are always present on the stage, each playing a role both in the background and foreground adding details to the moment. Big red cables on each side of the stage serve as a frame and as a web, linking all the stories to each other and reaching out to us.

A great new career has begun for playwright Véronique Côté.  

The script, published by Leméac, will be launched next week.
Also, to be presented in Montreal from October 30 to November 17 at le Théatre d'Aujourd’hui.

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