La Fureur de ce que je pense
Nine glass rooms are on full display. In six of them, women are revealed living in their private spaces. Each room corresponds to a song, and each song expresses an obsession, an anxiety, or a recurrent hope in the thoughts and writing of Nelly Arcan. Each song is delivered by a different woman. The seventh song—the lost song—is the song of the chorus, directed by a phantom character that intermittently creeps into the women’s private worlds. Though they are different from Nelly, each of these women embodies an aspect of the subjects explored in her writing.
Nelly Arcan was a woman exposed to the public eye, made vulnerable by both the scrutiny of others and her own lack of modesty. The power of the rhythm of her writing is striking. Emphasizing this, La fureur de ce que je pense is a collage of the author’s texts transposed into songs—a far cry from psychological theatre or biographical narrative. The show pays homage to Nelly Arcan, the author whose life was too short.
Nelly Arcan’s writing contains so much darkness that it’s often necessary to lift your eyes from the pages a moment for a break. One thinks, “My God, what suffering, what a raw outlook. And what doggedness, what toughness, what brightness there is in these eyes that have pierced through others like daggers.”
Paradoxically, we then feel affection for this author who writes without pity or compassion. The momentum of the fury spit out in these hard, sharp words doesn’t mask the terror that this brillant woman—a prisoner to a sort of state of nonstop anxiety—felt when faced with the injustices of the human condition, the female condition, and situations of love. Flowing like a swiftly moving river, this writing constantly exposes the intensity of the suffering she felt in being herself and the amplitude of her unhappiness. This show is a song delivered by a chorus of six actresses and a dancer, all remarkable artists who are deeply rooted in life. At the end, a drunken young woman walks off into the night with her shoes in her hand. I imagine this delicate phantom going back home. She sleeps a bit and then wakes up full of life the next day.
Dec 8 to 10, 2022 — 100 minutes with no intermission $55 — $71
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What People Are Saying...
La fureur de ce que je pense is a dazzling excursion into the work of Nelly Arcan. From Arcan’s writings, with their recurring themes of suffering, the cosmos, death and female identity, director Marie Brassard has extracted seven spellbinding monologues (…) With a cast of six outstanding actresses and one talented dancer, she has orchestrated a sophisticated, powerfully physical show, a compelling blend of sensuality and brutality. Antonin Sorel’s imposing yet sophisticated stage design gives tangible form to the contradictory voices inhabiting Arcan’s shattered psyche.
I seldom confer the “must-see” distinction, but La fureur de ce que je pense categorically ranks as one of the most enthralling theatrical experiences one has ever been privileged to encounter. (…) The production effortlessly stands alone as Montreal Theatre Hub’s top pick for this year’s FTA for its breathtaking aestheticism, resplendent prose, and arresting message. Galvanizing, sophisticated, and intricate in its finest of details, it’s the kind and calibre of theatre a reviewer profoundly yearns for and waits for years to come across. (…) The striking scenography by Antonin Sorel isolates the seven actresses in adjoint glass cubicles from where they deliver their individual speeches, each presenting unique key motifs from Arcan’s novels. Akin to fragile shop mannequins on vulnerable display, they chant on the objectification of the female figure and the paradoxical empowerment and imprisonment of beauty. (…) Each carnal performance is certifiably more exquisite than the next, but Sophie Cadieux and Larissa Corriveau in the opening and closing segments, respectively, are particularly noteworthy for their remarkable work in distorted physicality.
Evelyne de la Chenelière
Julie Le Breton
Text (Collage) Nelly Arcan
Adaptation and Direction Marie Brassard
Original Idea Development Sophie Cadieux
Collaboration to the Adaptation and Dramaturgy Daniel Canty
Set and Properties Design Antonin Sorel
Properties Design Assistance Alex Hercule Desjardins
Lighting Design Mikko Hynninen
Music Alexander MacSween
Sound Design and management Frédéric Auger
Costume Design Catherine Chagnon
Costume Design Assistance Éric Poirier
Makeup Design Jacques-Lee Pelletier
Hair Design Patrick G. Nadeau
Assistance to Marie Brassard Hélène Villeneuve
Production Direction Anne McDougall
Technical Direction Mateo Thebaudeau
Production Infrarouge/Espace GO
Co-Production Théâtre français du CNA (Ottawa), Festival TransAmériques (Montreal), and PARCO (Tokyo)
International Tour Management Menno Plukker Theatre Agent Inc
France Tour Management Sarah Ford, Quarternaire
The text of LA FUREUR DE CE QUE JE PENSE is taken from Putain et Folle by Nelly Arcan, published by Editions du Seuil, as well as from L'enfant dans le miroir, published by Marchand de Feuille, taken from Burqua de chair, published by Editions du Seuil.
The original version of the show premiered in 2013 at Espace GO