Thursday, December 5, 2013

Review: (Montreal) Contes urbains

Hubert Lemire                   Photo Courtesy Urbi et Orbi

It's Beginning to Look a Lot Like...
by Élaine Charlebois

This year’s edition of Contes urbains indulged its spectators with a series of six holiday stories that reflected the mindset of our generation. Belonging to the same generation, each writer and actor brought great energy and dedication to each piece, keeping the La Licorne audience delighted from beginning to end. 

Starting off the night was Julie-Anne Ranger-Beauregard’s piece “Madame Renard” performed by Rachel Graton. Considering that the telling of myths has been largely relegated to a thing of the past, this mythical story about an immortal fox was both refreshing and nostalgic. This piece was later followed by a great performance by Hubert Lemire who acted out a Christmas Eve story written by Olivier Sylvestre. This was a tale that dealt with the reality and complexity of unreciprocated love. Lemire plays a young man who realizes he is in love with his promiscuous roommate and best friend Luc during a Réveillon dinner that they have decided to prepare and share together this year. 

While each piece was genuinely rich in its own right, the standout tale of the night was definitely Rébecca Déraspe’s story “Votre crucifixion”. Performed with amazing charisma, humour and energy by Catherine Trudeau, this hilarious story comments on the daily looks and judgmental stares that mothers get from strangers when they discipline they bratty children in public. This story takes on a radical turn for the worse when the on-looking crowd who witness Trudeau’s character, Marie, hit her son, Jésus, decides to nail her to a cross, punishing her for being a ‘bad’ parent. 

Adding to the strangely joyful experience that was Contes urbains were musicians Viviane Audet and Robin-Joël Aubin Cool who performed original folklore-inspired Holiday music between each piece. That said, ultimately Contes urbains was a heart-warming and touching experience, a great holiday treat! 

Contes Urbains runs Dec. 3 - 21
See also our review of this year's edition of Urban Tales

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