Sunday 2 May 2010

Paris Polaroids: A Night at the Theatre

For the third in the series of Paris Polaroids guest posts, Andi Fisher reminisces about a Parisian night at the theatre.

I love movies and I love comedies. However what I love most of all is seeing film actors that I appreciate live on the stage. When I met my French husband, and while learning French, I discovered a comedic theater troupe known as 'le Splendid'. Like most people, I started with Les Bronzés series, but then watched everything that Christian Clavier, Michel Blanc, Gérard Jugnot, Thierry Lhermitte, Josiane Balasko, Marie-Anne Chazel, Bruno Moynot and Claire Magnin made.

I later saw Marie-Anne Chazel in a pièce (play) called Le Butin in 2005, but had never seen any of the other members of Splendid. One day though I was watching a taped episode of a television programme called Vivement Dimanche and saw Christian Clavier and Jean Poiret promoting their new pièce 'La Cage aux Folles' which was going to start in the Fall. I was ecstatic and had to get tickets!

Theater culture is very much alive and well in France, supported by the people and thriving through love. Every time my husband and I visit Paris we try to take in a least one play, which we consider to be one of the most wonderful gifts that Paris gives to its citizens. I am not fluent in French but I love going to watch theater none-the-less. It is thrilling to sit in an audience and know that you are about to share something very special with these people. Will everyone laugh at the same time? Will I laugh at the right moment? I gauge my grasp of the language or my understanding of context by whether my responses are the same as the others.

We got our tickets during our visit in November and went along to the show. The performance was at the Théâtre de la Porte Saint-Martin in the heart of the 'Grands Boulevards' theatre district in the 10th arrondissement. The evening was magical and the performances were outstanding. What made it even more amusing was the very next day, as I sat having a panaché at Les Deux Magots, Christian Clavier walked by speaking on his cell phone!

Now as I plan my next trip to Paris and think about what pièce I may see, I fondly remember that evening in that magical place and hope to pass another moment there. This version of the play has not yet been released on DVD so the only souvenir I have today is this photo I took of the curtain!

Andi Fisher

Andi Fisher is a francophile blogger living in the San Francisco Bay Area. Her eclectic blog, is a travel-based blog that details Andi's misadventures as she eats her way through countries around the world as well as the merry musings of a feisty-foodie slash lit-chickie slash globe-trotting wannabe Frenchie!

Send your Paris Polaroid! The beauty of the Polaroid was that it captured an instant. Such pictures were celebrations of the emotion of a moment, but like memories, Polaroids faded over time. In this series I am aiming to compile a selection of these Paris instants for posterity. If you have a memory of a Paris instant you would like to share, please send it to me and I will publish it here. A photo (which I will transform into Polaroid form) would be a bonus but is not a necessity (I can find one!). If you have a site, a project, a business, or just yourself to promote, send me the link and I will add a mention to your post!


Adam said...

Andi mentioned something else about the theatre in France which I thought would be best added here as a comment.

"One of the best things they do in France that I have not seen in the U.S. is that once a particular play is no longer running in the theater it is put on DVD and it can be purchased in stores like FNAC.

There are two benefits to this. First, it allows a much wider audience to view the play. Theater tickets are not cheap, and by selling a DVD version, people who cannot afford to see it while it is playing live still have an opportunity to see it, by either purchasing or renting the DVD for a fraction of the cost.

Secondly, it is a wonderful souvenir. I always look for the past pièces I have on my next visits to Paris. That way I can re-watch and re-live the memories. Not every pièce gets made into DVD, or sometimes it takes longer than others, so until such time, I have only my memories."

PeterParis said...

My Polaroid camera went to the garbage bin a few years ago! Maybe a stupid thing to do?

Andi said...

Thanks so much for allowing me to guest post!

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