“It’s rare to encounter a play that climbs so insidiously into your psyche, whose impact you don’t even reckon until your unconscious alerts you to its presence. Honoré had crafted such a piece…”
– Kimberly Jannarone, Translator – Death of a Young Man
READ THE BLOG!
Translator’s Kimberly Jannarone and Erik Butler on Christophe Honoré’s ‘Un jeune se tue’ – Death of a Young Man
Christophe Honoré’s work has been haunting this translator for years, although I didn’t know it until I woke up in a panicked sweat in an apartment in Paris last Fall, rushing to turn on the lights, trying to shake off the most intensely frightening dream I’d had in years… READ MORE!
Six Playwrights both French and American; Anthony Clarvoe, Léonore Confino, Prince Gomolvilas, Riad Gahmi, Liz Duffy Adams, Jon Bernson and DJ Michael Falsetto-Mapp – will create a new play together in 48 hours, and perform it live with the audience and artists dancing to their favorite tunes between scenes. The six Playwrights cooperatively decide on a set-list of six songs that would make even the dead get up and boogie, and together they develop an interactive story that involves the city of the day, the mood of the moment, or a current event that inspires them.
This season’s “DES VOIX… Bal Littéraire” is on Friday, May 9, 7 PM at The French American International School at150 Oak Street, San Francisco, CA 94102.
WELCOME TO DES VOIX … A FESTIVAL OF NEW FRENCH PLAYS AND CINEMA
Welcome to the Des Voix Festival … Biennial 2014. We are thrilled to welcome you to our transatlantic multimedia tour – a whirlwind joyride to Paris – all happening within several city blocks of San Francisco. Hold onto your scarves! Revolution is in the air, new ideas are taking root, and the streets are alive with possibilities!
Choosing the 2014 plays from among nearly two dozen sent by our partners, The Maison Antoine Vitez (French translators dedicated solely to dramatic literature), required passionate dialogue, with many questions and numerous points of view. Is Confino’s new tech-inspired language, pop cultural references, and use of French adolescent slang (created by saying words literally backwards) translatable? Will Gahmi’s shocking poetic language and strategic use of racial stereotypes be mitigated by the work’s absurdist humor? Does Honoré’s highly cinematic sensibility and atmospheric brilliance hold the same power in another language? After much debate, our answer to all of these was a resounding YES!
To prove our point, we also carry the Des Voix journey forward with Cutting Ball’s full production of Samuel Gallet’s surreal Communiqué n° 10 (a translation project from the Des Voix 2012), which will take our festival full circle. The play, written in response to the 2005 riots outside of Paris by North African immigrants, takes us deep inside the French Banlieues (similar to housing projects in the U.S.) to prove that these seemingly untranslatable works of art have a solid place in our cultural experience.
We are eternally grateful to our skilled and passionate translators who have bravely endeavored to un- cover the precise contexts, idioms, nuances and cultural references necessary in order to transform the foreign into the familiar.
This year we have expanded our festival to include new and ground- breaking French cinema. We have the West Coast premiere of Michel Gondry’s manic love story, Mood Indigo. We will also be presenting an anxiety driven look into the world of a single mother with Justine Triet’s Ceasar-nominated film Age of Panic, as well as Paulette, an irreverent cult hit, Le Chef, a beloved foodie comedy, and a newly released director’s cut of Patrice Chereau’s masterwork, Queen Margot.
We are eager to share this work with you and hope you will experience all the festival has to offer: three extraordinary new translations, an American premiere production, five brilliant films, the unique Bal Littéraire!
We invite all of you to join us for a glass of wine in Tides Theatre’s lobby after the shows. Meet the playwrights, translators and partners. Share your thoughts with us. Des Voix 2014 is a cultural exchange that we dare you to share!
Amy Mueller, Artistic Director & Jennifer Welsh, Festival Producer
DES VOIX … FOUND IN TRANSLATION Biennial 2014
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
CONTACT: David Hyry (415) 864-3547 email@example.com
AN INTERNATIONAL CULTURAL EXCHANGE INITIATIVE
PLAYWRIGHTS FOUNDATION, TIDES THEATRE & CUTTING BALL THEATER PRESENT
DES VOIX… FOUND IN TRANSLATION Biennial 2014
A Festival of New French Plays and Cinema-San Francisco May 1-25, 2014
NEW TRANSLATIONS OF PROVOCATIVE PLAYS BY CHRISTOPHE HONORÉ, LEONORE CONFINO, RIAD GAHMI AND SAMUEL GALLET May 8-11, 2014
New French Cinema May 4, 18 & 25 2014
A Rare US “Bal Littéraire” On Friday, May 9, 7 PM
With Nathalie Fillion member of La Coopérative d’Ecriture
In Partnership with The Consul General Of France In San Francisco
and Maison Antoine Vitez, Paris, France
American Playwrights’ Work Presented In Paris May 25, 2014
SAN FRANCISCO, CA U.S.A. – Playwrights Foundation (PF) Cutting Ball Theater and Tides Theatre announced the Des Voix…Found In Translation Biennial 2014, a Festival of New French Plays and Cinema in San Francisco May 1-25, 2014. Des Voix…Found In Translation is an international exchange project that initiates the translation of vanguard French and American playwrights, supporting the presentation of their work to audiences on both sides of the Atlantic. Des Voix…Found In Translation features new play readings-May 8-11 at Tides Theatre and also includes: A Festival of New French Cinema May 4, 17 & 25 featuring some of the most dynamic French screenwriters in this generation, concurrently at Tides Theatre; A rare “Bal Littéraire” A New Play Nightclub on Friday May 9 at 7 PM , Hosted with Nathalie Fillion of La Coopérative d’Ecriture (Cooperative Writing) at The French American International School. Go towww.desvoixfestival.com for the full schedule.
This San Francisco festival features new translations of provocative plays by four of the most innovative playwrights working in France today – Christophe Honoré, Leonore Confino and Riad Gahmi will be showcased with new play readings May 8-11 at Tides Theatre. Samuel Gallet’s play COMMUNIQUÉ N°10 translated by Rob Melrose in the 2012 Des Voix Festival is receiving its American Premiere (May 1-25) as part of Cutting Ball Theater’s 15th Anniversary season for this Des Voix… festival. Three plays will be performed in English during the month-long Festival at Tides Theatre with COMMUNIQUÉ N°10 at Cutting Ball in San Francisco.
The fabled “auteur” Christophe Honoré, (an heir apparent of the French New Wave) Christophe Honoré‘s first play, ‘Les Débutantes,’ was performed at Avignon in 1998. Christophe, a filmmaker and screenwriter, has had many outings at Cannes, closing the fest in 2011 with ‘The Beloved,’ featuring both Catherine Deneuve and daughter Chiara Mastroianni. He returned to Avignon with his play ‘Dionysos Impuissant’ (in 2005), with Joana Preiss and Louis Garrel playing the leads.
David Hyry & Associates P.O. Box 411525 San Francisco CA 94141-1525 (415) 864-3547 Des Voix -add one
Leonore Confino is known for her recently completed trilogy of plays about lifes obsessions, Her play ‘Building,’ was one of the highlights of the last Festival Off d’Avign. The second play ‘Ring’ is 17 rounds of boxing between couples, in which the actors play ten characters dealing with life as a couple. This past January, the third part of Léonore’s trilogy ‘Les Uns sur Les Autres,’ a play about a French suburban family, played at the Théâtre de la Madeleine in Paris, starring Agnès Jaoui as the exhausted mother.
Riad Gahmi is a passionate raconteur, who in a long-term collaboration with Philippe Vincent, co-writer of the spectacle/play ‘Un arabe dans mon miroir’ (An Arab in My Mirror), which is a spectacle of scenes combining theater, film, and music. The play was workshopped in Cairo and performed at various theaters in Germany, France, and New York In each country a local actor and cast speaks in her native language, rebuilding every time, becoming a simple witness of the war in Algeria in the Egyptian revolution through the September 11 attacks.
Samuel Gallet is an emerging writer who has made his mark as one of the most prominent young playwrights of his generation, with plays staged by top Parisian directors. His play ‘Encore Un Jour Sans’ was a finalist for the Grand Prix de Littérature Dramatique. Inspired by the 2005 Paris riots, his play ‘Communique N°10,’ was translated by Rob Melrose for the 2012 Des Voix Festival.
Playwrights Foundation’s Artistic Director Amy Mueller comments on the collaboration: “It takes a village to build a bridge across cultures, and we are thrilled to be working with two of San Francisco’s most globally minded Artistic Directors – Rob Melrose of Cutting Ball Theater and Jenifer Welch of Tides Theatre – and one of the foremost translators in the world, Laurent Muhleisen, to build this project that connects the Left Bank with the Left Coast.” Collaborator Rob Melrose, an acclaimed translator and director observes that “These four works are simply extraordinary plays, theatrically brilliant and singular in the ways each story tackles the culture-quake of the 21st century – using a quintessentially French lens to express the universality of the current cultural zeitgeist in the West.”
At the heart of the Festival in mid-May will be the Des Voix Festival itself, a non-stop weekend showcasing three brand new translations:Christophe Honoré’s play Death of A Young Man (Un Jeune Se Tue) is a story about love, death and ghosts. A play about phantoms. As three girls are standing around a burning car, bits from the past and present resurface. Later there will be a time for rituals, before the ghosts return. Leonore Confino’s newest work One Upon Another (Les Uns Sur Les Autres) a fast talking, fast sleeping, fast eating, nonsensical family satire driven by an overabundance of electronic devices – the world of a proper family connected to everything but itself. Riad Gahmi’s darkly comedic work Where and When we Died (Où et Quand Nous Sommes Morts which satirically confronts European xenophobia, anti-Arab racism and media’s sensationalist conjuring of empathy, which results in social division rather than social unity The Festival features Cutting Ball Theater’s American Premiere of Samuel Gallet’s ‘Communique No. 10.’ Exploring the tensions of the underclass in a city that is bursting at the seams, ‘Communique N°10′ was inspired by the 2005 Paris riots led by North African youth. Performances begin April 25 (Press Opening May 1), and the production will run through May 25.
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NEW FRENCH CINEMA
Featured films are; (Partial List) Sunday May 4th 5:30 pm MOON INDIGO (L’écume des jours) by Michel Gond ; Sunday May 4th 8 pm LE CHEF by Daniel Cohen :Sunday May 18th 5:30 pm PAULETTE by Jerome Enrico; Sunday May 18th 8pm AGE OF PANIC (La Bataille de Solferino) directed by Justine Triet; Sunday May 25 5:40 pm QUEEN MARGOT by Patrice Chereau. This is a special presentation Patrice Chereau’s Director’s Cut (Premier Cannes 2013) who passed in 2013. Jennifer Welch of Tides, who curates the films remarks, “Expanding the scope of the Des Voix Festival, and deepening the cultural exchange. We are curating a series of contemporary French films that speak to American audiences, bring these voices to a community eager for new and provocative foreign cinema.” At Tides Theatre, (*programing subject to change)
This series of New French Cinema begins with the Northern California Premiere of MOON INDIGO (L’écume des jours) by Michel Gondry on Sunday May 4th 5:30pm MOON INDIGO (L’écume des jours), Featuring Audrey Tautou, this manic, visionary love story is penned by the eminently inventive Michel Gondry who finds an ideal counterpart in Boris Vian, whose novel provides the foundation for this love story. Sunday May 4th 8 pm LE CHEF by Daniel Cohen, A frothy comedy in which a veteran chef faces off against his restaurant group’s new CEO.
Sunday May 18th 5:30 pm PAULETTE by Jerome Enrico. Sunday May 18th 8 pm AGE OF PANIC (La Bataille de Solferino) directed by Justine Tiet ‘A tour de force of intertwining documentary and fiction’ Richard Brody, The New Yorker. During a time of great political change, a frazzled young mother tries to keep it together on the home front.
Sunday May 25 5:40 pm QUEEN MARGOT by Patrice Chereau. The Young Queen Margot finds herself trapped in an arranged marriage amidst a religious war. This is a special presentation of the legendary Patrice Chereau’s Director’s Cut (Premier Cannes 2013) who passed in 2013.*
The festival features a rare Bal Littéraire (A New Play Nightclub) on Friday, May 9th at 7 PM. This tradition is wildly popular throughout France, typically created in 48 hours by multiple writers, and performed for one evening only, is a unique hybrid of flash performance, club dancing and play reading – and includes audience participation. The Bal will will tap the talents of six writers – three French and three American – in collaboration. Hosted with Nathalie Fillion member of La Coopérative d’Ecriture, the originators of “Bal Littéraire” in France.
Festival events are scheduled throughout the month of May at three venues between Union Square and the vibrant Market Street corridor, the hub of the city’s artistic and cultural action. Go to www.desvoixfestival.com/ for the full schedule.
The goal of the translation project is to exchange ideas and perspectives of today’s world, and to increase and deepen cultural exchanges between France and the U.S. that began began with Des Voix…Found In Translation 2012. This project is a collaboration between Playwrights Foundation, a legendary (for over 3 decades) new play development center in San Francisco, Cutting Ball Theater, named SF’s “Best Experimental Theater Company” , and The Tides Theatre, an innovative new theater making its mark in SF Culture, and the Maison Antoine Vitez], an International Centre for Drama Translation in Paris.
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The French playwrights will be in residence in San Francisco for the duration of the festival in May, and will participate in the rehearsal and performance process of their newly translated plays. Translators include Kimberley Jannarone and Erik Butler (Un Jeune Se Tue), Michelle Haner (Les Uns Sure Les Autres), and Rob Melrose (‘Communique N10′ & Où Et Quand Nous Sommes Morts), who also directs his translations. Each of the three new plays will be performed as staged readings during the festival by many of the Bay Area’s finest actors and directors. For the erudite scholarly theater-goer, the festival will also include a colloquium entitled “The Left Bank Meets The Left Coast: Transmigration of Theater and Culture”
The Paris festival is being produced by the Maison Antoine Vitez, and will be presented May 25, 2014 at the Théâtre des Bouffes du Nord, founded by Peter Brook, and known worldwide as the place to see groundbreaking work. The Paris festival will feature translations of exceptionally gifted, early career American playwrights Rajiv Joseph, ‘Bengal Tiger At The Baghdad Zoo,’ Marcus Gardley, ‘Every Tongue Confess’ (as a radio play) and Liz Duffy Adams, ‘The Reckless Ruthless Brutal Charge Of It or The Train Play’ all performed in French. Commissioned to translate these three works are Dominique Hollier (Gardley), Laurent Muhleisen (Joseph) and Isabelle Famchon (Adams).
The producers are working closely with the Cultural Services of the French Consul General in San Francisco on the presentation of the American festival.
CALENDAR EDITORS PLEASE NOTE
Playwrights Foundation and The Tides Theatre Present
DES VOIX… FOUND IN TRANSLATION Biennial 2014
A Festival of Contemporary French Playwrights and Cinema
The Left Bank Meets the Left Coast
In San Francisco May 1-25, 2014
In partnership with The Cutting Ball Theater, the French International School
and the French Consulate of San Francisco
Des Voix…Found In Translation features new translations of provocative plays by four of the most innovative playwrights working in France today – Christophe Honoré, Leonore Confino and Riad Gahmi will be showcased with new play readings-May 8-11 at Tides Theatre.
Des Voix…Found In Translation also includes: A Festival of New French Cinema May 4, 17 & 25 featuring some of the most dynamic French screenwriters in this generation, concurrently at Tides Theatre; A rare “Bal Littéraire” A New Play Nightclub on Friday May 9 at 7 PM , Hosted with Nathalie Fillion of La Coopérative d’Ecriture (Cooperative Writing) at The French American International School.
Go towww.desvoixfestival.com for the full schedule.
Des Voix -add four
Featuring The Plays: (Each play in a new translation will be presented as a staged reading twice over the Festival Weekend, the full production of Gallet’s play will be presented four times during the festival weekend.)
The Plays May 8-11, 2014 at The Tides Theatre
Sat., May 10 8pm & Sun. May 11 at 2pm
Death of A Young Man (Un Jeune Se Tue) by Christophe Honoré
Translated by Erik Butler and Kimberly Jannarone
Sat., May 10 at 2pm & Sunday, May 11 at 7:30pm (closing)
One Upon Another (Les Uns Sur Les Autres) by Léonore Confino
Les Uns Sur Les Autres by Lénore Confino, Translated by Michelle Haner
Thurs. May 8 at 7:30 pm, & Sat. May 10 at 5pm (Opening)
Where and When we Died (Où et Quand Nous Sommes Morts )by Riad Gahmi
Translated by Rob Melrose
all at The Tides Theatre, 533 Sutter Street, 2nd Floor @ Powell St., San Francisco 94102
Communique No. 10 May 1-25 EXIT on Taylor Street, 277 Taylor St., San Francisco, CA 94102
Samuel Gallet’s play COMMUNIQUÉ N°10 in its U.S. premiere, translated by Rob Melrose in the 2012 Des Voix Festival is receiving its American Premiere (May 1-25) as part of Cutting Ball Theater’s 15th Anniversary season for this Des Voix… festival.
Bal Litteraire Friday, May 9th at 7 PM. The French American International School
150 Oak Street, San Francisco, CA 94102
A rare Bal Littéraire (A New Play Nightclub) Wildly popular throughout France, typically created in 48 hours by multiple writers, and performed for one evening only, is a unique hybrid of flash performance, club dancing and play reading – and includes audience participation. The Bal will will tap the talents of six writers – three French and three American – in collaboration. Hosted with Nathalie Fillion member of La Coopérative d’Ecriture, the originators of “Bal Littéraire” in France.
Film May May 4, 17 & 25 at Tides Theatre
Featured films are; (Partial List) Sunday May 4th 5:30 pm MOON INDIGO (L’écume des jours) by Michel Gond ; Sunday May 4th 8 pm LE CHEF by Daniel Cohen :Sunday May 18th 5:30 pm PAULETTE by Jerome Enrico; Sunday May 18th 8pm AGE OF PANIC (La Bataille de Solferino) directed by Justine Triet; Sunday May 25 5:40 pm QUEEN MARGOT by Patrice Chereau. This is a special presentation Patrice Chereau’s Director’s Cut (Premier Cannes 2013) who passed in 2013. * (*programing subject to change)
Tickets on sale April 1st
Readings: $20 advance $25 at the door
Bal Litteraire: $25
Communique Gala performance, May 2 $50 each
Readings Only Pass*: $40
Film Only Pass*: $25
Full Festival Flex Pass: $75- 2 Communique, 2 Readings, 2 Movie tickets
*Includes code for Discounted Communique N˚ 10 tickets
Go to www.desvoixfestival.com/ for the full schedule and tickets
The 2012 Des Voix Festival…Found in Translation is over, and it was a great success. But it’s not totally over. As previously posted, the Des Voix Festival, was recorded and streamed live on #NEWPLAYTV. The Bal Litteraire: New Play Nightclub and the Two Part Des Voix Colloquium were recorded and streamed live.
If you missed the live streaming of either of these events or would like to see them over and over and over and over again, then the good folks at #NEWPLAYTV have archived the video so you may watch it over and over and over again.
All the videos of the Bal and the Colloquium can her found: here
By CHLOE VELTMAN
“Lies like truth”
Writer & Broadcaster
May 27, 2012
There are times when it’s good to go into a cultural happening with a strong sense of what one’s letting oneself in for and there are times when a lack of knowledge provides the best possible ammo.
I had no idea what to expect when I showed up on Friday evening at Z Space Theatre in San Francisco’s Mission district for an event that the French consulate, which hosted the soiree, was calling “Un Bal Litteraire.” I didn’t bother to read much about it. The short description that Ivan Bertoux, the Deputy Cultural Attaché for the French consulate here in San Francisco, gave me a few weeks ago was enough to pique my interest: “It’s a new play nightclub,” Ivan simply said.
I had a ball at The Bal. It was one of the most unusual and gratifying arts experience I’ve had in a while, in fact. Why? Because the entire auditorium — audience and performers alike — danced. A lot.
Never has a night at the theatre been so communal…and so incredibly sweaty.
Here’s how The Bal bounced:
Three French playwrights — Marion Aubert, Nathalie Fillion and Samuel Gallet — arrived in San Francisco earlier this week to take part in a Franco-American drama festival entitled Des Voix: Found in Translation. Productions of their plays are being produced in town this weekend.
The Bal was the kickoff event for the festival. To prepare for the happening, which has been produced several times in Europe in recent years but has never before now been experienced by US audiences, the playwrights participated in what might best be described as a “theatrical hackathon.”
Six dramatists — the three French visitors plus American playwrights Marcus Gardley, Octavio Solis and Liz Duffy Adams — gathered on Wednesday afternoon with a bunch of their favorite songs at their disposal. They came up with a storyline involving San Francisco and a set-list of ten songs that they felt best described the story, and would encourage people to get up off their seats and boogie.
Then, over the next 24 hours, each playwright developed a section of the narrative. They reconvened to read the pieces out loud together. After that meeting, the French writers’ pieces were sent off to a team of (caffeinated!) translators to be turned into English overnight. The translators included Dan Harder, Aubrey Gabel and Ivan Bertoux.
On Friday evening, a crowd of at least a hundred people showed up at Z Space for the Bal. A line of microphones had been set up on an otherwise empty stage. Some audience members sat in the regular seats out front. Others of us sat in chairs to the side of the stage, flanking the mics.
After introductions, the playwrights assembled on stage (as pictured above) and started doing a reading of the new play they’d just created. As soon as the first scene ended, the music started. A few people rushed the stage. With about 30 seconds, most of the audience was up on its feet, shaking around to the pop song that was booming through the theatre’s the sound system.
When we sat down again and the dramatists returned to the microphones to continue with their reading, most of us didn’t bother returning to our seats. We sat on stage.
The dance party occurred throughout the evening because each of the ten scenes in the play was interspersed with a song. The styles ranged from rock to pop to hip-hop and were all equally compelling to move to.* After the closing scene (which saw the protagonist, a young French woman, and her lesbian lover from San Francisco, going happily off together into the sunset) there was yet more dancing. And then we all repaired, breathless and happy, to a very sweaty reception in the Z Space lobby.
Not only was the incorporation of the dancing a wonderfully absurd addition to an evening of play-going and fitted well with the quirky, feelgood comedy being narrated on stage, but it also helped to break up the action and melt traditional barriers that usually separate the performers and audience members. Plus it was simply great to let off some steam.
One doesn’t usually go to the theatre to lose weight. But burning calories is clearly a natural consequence of attending A Bal Litteraire.
*For some reason I’m having trouble recalling the song titles from the evening today. The Cyndi Lauper hit, “Girls Just Wanna Have Fun” was one of the tracks. The rest will hopefully come back to me soon. Or I’ll ask Ivan for the set-list and post that at some point…
by Emily-Jane Cohen
Translator of Out There (along with Michelle Haner)
This week has been intense and amazing. It’s been a treat to be there as Amy (and Nathalie) work with the actors and to continue to learn about Nathalie’s vision of the play and its staging. Last night’s Bal was such a success. It surpassed expectations: the energy of the actors, the public, and all the festival folks was tremendous and it was a joy to be a part of the collaboration by bouncing around on the dance floor. The playwrights really meshed, and not only as writers, but (and I take this to be part of the exceptional status of it all)as performers. I can’t wait to get to the readings!
In preparation for the Des Voix Festival, we were able to round up some special production photos of one of our three plays, Out There (A L’Ouest) by Nathalie Fillion. As described by Lauren Gallagher in an article about Des Voix in the San Francisco Examiner, Out There ”exposes a family dealing with multiple divorces thrown into greater crisis by the 2008 recession, and circumstances complicated by a patriarch high on antidepressants and a grandfather with Alzheimer’s”.
Before all three plays, Out There, Communiqué N°10, and Pride, Pursuit, and Decapitation, came to America for the Des Voix Festival they were having full productions in France. Luckily for us, we were able to get our hands on some production photos of the full French production of Out There. Enjoy! (more…)