Théâtre des Lucioles, Rennes, France, 2011
Author: Rafael Spregelburd
Directed by Marcial Di Fonzo Bo, Elise Vigier
about the production
Théâtre des Lucioles has been around for more than fifteen years as an independent theatre grouping strong actors‘ personalities, mutually akin as for generation and attitudes, who sporadically assume the role of the director as well. The French scene perceives them as a creatively and democratically balanced group or, in the words of local critics, „a group of intelligent, frisky children who intend to have fun, meaningfully and at any price, when staging each new play”.
Paranoia, in the tandem direction of the Argentinian actor and director Marcial di Fonzo Bo and the French actress Elise Vigier, is one of the three dramas by the contemporary Argentinian author Rafael Spregelburd, which have been staged by the theatre recently. The play is Part VI of his seven volume drama inspired by the painting of the Seven Deadly Sins by Hieronym Bosch, through which the playwright intends to diagnose the current state of affairs in mankind.
Paranoia is a megalomaniac, crazily mixed theatrical science fiction, caricaturing elevated and fallen film and literature genres. Spregelburd’s story describing how the extra- terrestrials, occupying the Earth, have become dependant on any type of fiction produced by humans (until they have devoured everything) is, in a certain sense, a parallel of the present time. And those who are there to save the world, i.e., those who must think up an original story in 24 hours which would satisfy the hungry artificial beings, are perfect losers or rather victims of the commercial world (an unfortunate astronaut who has survived a space crash, dependant on tranquilizers, a once famous female author of trash literature, a mathematician who has a problem with counting, an old robot with a broken down memory card).
Di Fonzo Bo and Vigier, reveal the morbid obsessions of contemporary man without moralizing and in the Tarantino style. The portray man as a unique species able to make up things which do not exist and are unrealizable. They talk about the need of originality and the related fiction, as if they had to account for one of the essential post-modernist questions about authorship – is it still possible to think up something new? Is it no so that all stories have already been told? They tackle contemporary man’s identity in the tradition of postmodernism, always with a humorous, philosophical distance. Also in situations when they very fittingly name one of the deadly diseases of contemporary society – the need to get rid of any suffering and replace it with emotional “re-programming”. Théâtre des Lucioles exaggerate, to the extreme, the vision of the world and work where it is possible to go on programming and operating things which have failed. They are asking a question: is there still something real, which is creating us, because, for a long time already, it has been denied that we are our own creators. What and how much are we making up and re-programming in order to live well?
Seven actors interpreting more than thirty characters and the story taking place on almost all continents enthral the viewer and draw him into the play. With their dynamic acting and original video art the authors captivate the theatre and draw a parody on trash horror films, TV novels, crime television series and scientific debates.
Théâtre des Lucioles are staging this, in a certain way, unstageable story, being simultaneously a cheap fiction and a philosophical reflection, as a grotesque, post apocalyptic magical tale, applying theatrical procedures, and as a modern, playful morality play, while doing perfect justice to the complicated reality of the present world, fatally contaminated with fiction and triviality.
directed by Marcial Di Fonzo Bo, Elise Vigier
dramaturgy: Guillermo Pisani
translation: Marcial Di Fonzo Bo, Guillermo Pisani
cast: Rodolfo De Souza, Marcial Di Fonzo Bo, Frédérique Loliée, Pierre Maillet, Clément Sibony, Julien Villa, Elise Vigier
scenery and light design: Yves Bernard
images: Bruno Geslin
costumes: Pierre Canitrot,
wigs, make-up: Cécile Kretschmar
sound: Manu Léonard
animations and graphics: Loïs de Cornulier (Sÿclo)
production: Théâtre des Lucioles, EPOC Productions
co-producriin: Théâtre National de Chaillot, Paris, Centre Dramatique Régional de Tours – Nouvel Olympia, Théâtre National de Bretagne – Rennes, Théâtre de Nîmes, Le Maillon – Théâtre de Strasbourg Scène européenne, Théâtre de la Place de Liège
artistic cooperation: Jeune Théâtre National, L’ Arche Editeur
Marcial Di Fonzo Bo (1968) – a native of Argentina (Buenos Aires) – settled in Paris in 1987, where he established himself as a talented actor and director. For his role of Richard III (directed by Matthias Langhoff) he obtained the prize “The Newcomer of the Year“ awarded by the French Syndicate of Critics in 1995. In 2004 the French Syndicate of Critics proclaimed him the best actor for his role in the play Munequita ou jurons de mourir avec gloire by Alejadro Tantanian. He has been regularly working with the Argentinian playwright Rafael Spregelburd. As a director he attracted attention with the staging of his plays La Estupidez (Stupidity) in cooperation with Elise Vigier in the Théâtre National de Chaillot and La Panique (Panicking) in cooperation with Pierre Laillet in the Théâtre des Teintureries in Lausanne. In June 2011 another Spregelburd’s play Stubbornness staged by him (presented also at the Festival d´Avignon 2011 together with Paranoia) had its debut at the festival in Turin. He also appeared on the film screen – in the film by Woody Allen Midnight in Paris (2001) where he played Pablo Picasso. Elise Vigier (1973) is a close colleague and co-director of Marcial Di Fonzo Bo, as well as other directors such as Pierre Maillet, Bruno Geslin, Frédérique Loliée and Rodrigo García.