Culture

a generation in the mirror



Rose won’t afford a second’s respite. She remains standing, held by the determination that pushed her to ring the doorbell of this couple of friends, Hazel and Robin, whom she has not seen for more than thirty years. At the time, all three were brilliant engineers who were growing powerful nuclear power plants around the world. In secret, once, Rose and Robin were lovers. However, this love of youth is not the motivation for the unexpected appearance of Rose which surprised Hazel so much that it almost knocked out her friend.

It is on this misunderstanding that opens the text of Lucy Kirkwood, a 38-year-old British author who we discover in France this autumn with two plays (Childrenso, and The Firmament, directed by Chloé Dabert, currently on tour). Then begins a scathing dialogue between the two women that everything seems to oppose: Hazel, the dapper retiree addicted to yoga, and Rose, the non-conformist, who affirms with irresistible mortuary: “I suck at sports, just looking at my sneakers depresses me. »

Fascinating subject

Soon, Robin joins this strange camera where the purpose of Rose’s visit gradually emerges. A tsunami severely damaged the nearby nuclear power plant, which they had built several decades earlier. Will they continue to enjoy a peaceful retirement while young employees risk their lives to try to repair the damage?

Under the incisive pen of Lucy Kirkwood, soaked in an explosive black humor, Children raises the question of the responsibility of baby boomers for the world they leave to their children and grandchildren. The subject is frontal, deliberately disturbing and exciting, between timeless intimacy and terrible topicality. Éric Vigner’s clear and uncluttered staging distils a disturbing atmosphere, where the echoes of the current disaster resound with acuity.

A theater that scratches

A force multiplied by this trio of particularly well-matched actors: Cécile Brune composes formidably with the polite anxiety – up to a point! – of the character of Hazel. Frédéric Pierrot endorses, with visible joy, the earthiness of Robin, a thousand leagues from the figure of the shrink ofIn therapywho brought her into many homes, and finally Dominique Valadié is impeccable in the skin of Rose the disruptive, all in nuances, both biting and vaguely indolent.

The disturbing score that they all perform together is not a light ballad: it points to the behavior of their own generation, and that of many spectators in the room. A theater that scratches to engage the debate.



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