"Vaudeville is the only theatrical tradition still alive in France," exclaimed one day Benno Besson. A strange statement. Why not take the word.
These two one-act plays are first opportunity to put in the footsteps of Labiche: monitored by the censorship of a Second Empire who gets drunk pleasant entertainment, he skilfully deploys satire and metaphysical. It is also an opportunity to examine a particular type, that of "the French comic actor."
This theater there is a body art in all its forms: body puppet, agitated, acting and acted, played by internal forces of darkness (the unconscious) and external (History). Raging body, leaping prevented sick; helpless body; strangled body, neurotic, forced, bulky, mechanized; awkward body, which breaks and breaks; desiring body, exuberant; body seat of the contradiction between the desire and the will; symptom body ...
Vaudeville involves players who know how to sing. Labiche will indeed spoken to the sung through a range of phrases that make the voice expressing the inexpressible: cries, sounds, breath, words which abut, who repeat, slip a set of ... "materials" that make up the vocal score of these short pieces.
Scenographically should be to tear Labiche bourgeois salon of the nineteenth century, by substituting a single binding space, not figurative, the same for both parts. Moreover, the man Labiche, condemned to futile agitation, lives in an "empty" of meaning, where the form is always preferred to content world. In this theater where we laugh at "nothing" bore a strange melancholy in the mad mechanical parts, a cog sometimes breaks, suggesting a desperate humanity and languid.