“The drunk” — The clarity is delusional minds messed up

Photo: Nicolas Descôteaux
The ten performers forming the distribution is more than solid and impress with their mastery of these characters tottering.

After having staged Illusions by 2015 at the Prospero, the prolific Florent Siaud up with The drunk, another text of Ivan Viripaev, a major figure in what is called the New Russian Drama. But if there are more scenes defined, and figures accurate as in the previous ones of the author, the logic motivating the actions and the dialogues are completely blurred by the fact that all are drunk. Investing in these absurd situations, Siaud offer a fascinating spectacle.


Drunk, 15 characters wander in the night, the rhythm of drama, causing a few crosses. The ten performers forming the distribution is more than solid and impress with their mastery of these characters tottering. Postures of each person in the group movements, while passing by springs of comedy, proven and delicate exchanges between actors, the physical partition developed by Siaud support meetings between the characters of a rare and mesmerizing intensity.


Outside of the festival, the scenes take turns funny, pathetic and touching. Intriguing, the characters draw us into their minds inebriated, authorising in any way from their speeches, mystical, inspired. They talk of love, of divinity, of sincerity and truth, with words that were repetitions, lies, allegories, sometimes vulgar, and often imaged. As if the drunk was mostly an excuse to gain access to this language, lyrical and quirky. And the orgy becomes a delicate echo of the mix of effects heady, dizzying and overwhelming that these words, with their detours, and their incarnation, can cause.


Drunkenness is also found in a poetic way with which the characters embrace the fragility of things, then break in with no consequences. Another poetry strange, relying on the duality, which is installed in the room’s gravity fun, its serious games, its vacuités full and clear-headed, blurred. Strange, too, to see the deep concerns held by the body loose, soft, out of the neurosis and the anxiety that consumes them.


In this universe, the designs light and sound seem to be always right, and enveloping, all in the service of stories than their share evocative. This is also the case of the videos projected on a backdrop to the movements of happily magical. A high wall of thick sections of plastic stands on the stage, a wall of porous, which is not without reminding us of the other projection surfaces of the staged Siaud in Quartett, Heiner Müller, and 4.48 Psychosis, by Sarah Kane. The persistence of these open walls stands as a symbol recurring character at once tangible and elusive of these dramaturgies demanding that Siaud continue to be placed on stage by beautifully sounding and they are real and mystical.

The Drunk

Text : Ivan Viripaev. Translation : Tania Moguilevskaia, and Gilles Morel. Directed by : Florent Siaud. Production of the Group of the Vigil. At the Prospero theater until December 16.

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