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BWW catches up with writer Cedric Chapuis to chat about bringing Beat to the 2019 Edinburgh Festival Fringe.

Tell us a bit about Beat

Beat is the English adaptation of Une Vie Sur Mesure, a play that I wrote and personally performed for more than 10 years, and whose direction is by Stéphane Batlle. Beat tells the story of a young man who is passionate about drums and whose candor is matched only by his virtuosity in playing his instrument. Alfie is a hero, or rather an anti-hero with a pure heart, who lives and breathes for his instrument. The story of his life is often funny, sometimes very poetic, always very moving. All this and great music.

Why is this an important story to tell?

First of all, it was an important story to tell... for me. Beat is my 6th play as an author, and it is about what was for me, a passionate love of adolescence. I personally experienced this incredible excitement every time I could play the drums. To this today, I still have an admiration, and an infinite love for this instrument. My initial desire was to share this passion with the audience, but I wanted to be able to do so within a strong story.

Today and in the end, Beat speaks of passion, but also of childhood, innocence, being different, first loves, relationships with family, friends and school... while highlighting the beauty of being human, when devoid of an ego.

How has the show been received so far?

With a lot of love and a great enthusiasm from the audience. And that's really what's so special about Beat: It's a show that appeals to the young and old alike. People leave the theatre feeling very moved, they talk about it and remember it for a very long time. After performances I am often approached by members of the audience who have seen the show for the 3rd or 4th time, having brought more family and friends with them. It seems that Beat is a show that people like to share with their family and friends.

Why bring it to Edinburgh?

As a French person, it is very exciting to present my work to new audiences, a sentiment I share with Shakespeare. It is above all an honour, and an incredible opportunity, to be able to experience this adventure at the largest Arts festival in the world!

What do you hope audiences take away from it?

The beauty of the story and its character. An intellectual, sensory and emotional experience of rare intensity, joy and love.

Photo credit: Michael Wharley

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