Intervention in public space

I would have preferred to have certainties.
I would have preferred to wear shades,
And to have had a sports car –
And I wouldn't even have noticed you.

A man walks down a street. He asks for directions. He starts talking a little too loudly - passers-by stop to gaze. The man seems disoriented; he is too noisy. Alone with his suitcase, he is obviously not crazy, so why is he talking so loud? Little by little, he is revealed as a character who harangues passers-by who have become ‘the audience’.

"He walks alone, aimlessly, without stopping, without certainty. He walks in the city, dragging a suitcase. And speaks of the liberal society which makes men tramps or madmen. Telephone sellers too, murderous beliefs, American superheroes and the steam engine... A cast-off of a man worn out by life, Pascal Laurent explodes with anger, fear and indignation. With a touch of humor and implacable logic : "When we drive in a nail, we drive it in for humanity." A show to follow.

Thierry Voisin.


Between scandal and theatre of intervention

There are people who write books, others who make films, Pascal Laurent talks.

He speaks caustically of our market society.

A society that vaguely accepts the presence of a madman and just looks away - but violently rejects the sane and lucid man who criticizes and denounces, in the middle of the crowd, at the queue waiting at the cash desk or during a police control.

The heart of the text is daily life: advertising, performance, profit, small issues...

In bursts of outrage, Laurent's character calls into question the legitimacy of advertising, video games and the violence they instill, the institutional trafficking of telephone packages, the profits generated by the lack of staff at the checkouts, the fear of testifying, the refusal to see or to hear… and always, he seeks the social and political cog in the wheel that provokes these attitudes, highlighting the villainous pettiness and little daily selfishnesses that generate larger social problems.

He challenges the mute, neutral, sometimes servile or even collaborative posture of each of his listeners.

The actor, stripped of his status as ‘spectacle’, disturbs the spectator as long as the reality of his presence is not perceived.

So much so, that during a performance of vitupErrance at the 2012 festival Vivacité in Sotteville-lès-Rouen, the municipal police interrupted the show, entering the circle that Pascal Laurent had created, and ordered him to leave.

"No, you're not a show, ... you're an impostor"

... the cop told him, grabbing his suitcase, the performance's only accessory, revealing that he hadn't even read the program of the festival whose smooth running he was supposed to protect.
Thus, an invisible theatre on the verge of scandal, which is based on an unknown person speaking in public space, reveals our society’s intolerance, through the reaction of these three municipal employees.
(see video below)

Creative Team & Partners
Having to listen to him forces us to judge him, and to take a stand. It transforms a space where those preferring to retreat into their bubble find themselves in a space that has become collective again, a unique aural space, where we check our neighbour to understand their reaction, in order to position ourselves.

With and by Pascal Laurent

Pascal Laurent is an author, actor, dancer, acrobat, stilt walker and director. Co-founder and co-artistic director of the Friches Théâtre Urbain company, he has worked on the solo form since his beginnings, and for almost 30 years has played the character of the enlightened charlatan - Melgut - who sets out to save the universe in exchange for a few pennies. Crawling, fearful, hunched, the character of Melgut feels pursued by the crowd in a universe where difference is forbidden.

With vitupErrance, Pascal Laurent, gets down from his stilts, with a lucid examination of the mediocrity of a greedy and selfish world.

CREATION Sotteville les Rouen Festival VIVA CITÉ (Off) 2012

TOUR Paris 17th - Batignolles, Festival Chalon dans la Rue (Off) 2013