He now has less than 500 days left before presenting "
" opening ceremony for the Paris Olympics but, in the meantime, the magnificent Thomas Jolly, a fan of "
", has a series of shows where the visual experience hits the mark.
His version of the cult rock opera
, performed in Paris from last November to January and currently on tour, has been so successful that it will resume in the capital from November 2023 to January 2024.
His adaptation of the play
(1944), a political fable about servitude in the face of the dictatorship signed by Russian Evgueni Schwartz, plays a last Parisian date on Sunday at the Théâtre des Amandiers in Nanterre, before continuing its tour in France.
And in June, the darling of public theater will make his debut at the Paris Opera, where he will present a new production of
Romeo and Juliet
Read alsoThomas Jolly, he was a king in Avignon
On July 26, 2024, the eyes of the whole world will be on the Seine, where the opening ceremony of the Olympic Games of which he is the artistic director will take place.
We are going fast, fast, fast.
It's wonderful to learn from this unique project, with the constraints and the questions that are asked
,” he comments.
We won't know more but one thing is certain: the 41-year-old from Rouen has a sense of showmanship and the public is amazed.
I love the visual experience
,” he says.
Then he immediately adds: “
We are not at the theater to see things that necessarily resemble what we can see on television, in the cinema or even in our lives
On stage, the one who, according to
knows what theater should be like in the Netflix era
", however manages to bring out a cinematic atmosphere.
Sounds and lights worthy of
, where he called on a scenographer (Bruno de Lavenère) for the first time, certain farcical characters with grimacing facial expressions and exaggerated make-up seem to have come straight out of a Tim Burton film.
The thundering sounds, aided by an ingenious set of lights by Antoine Travert and smoke pushed by a fan to evoke the arrival of the three-headed dragon, are worthy of Jurassic
To evoke the servitude of the people, he is inspired by silent German expressionist films, such as
The Cabinet of Doctor Caligari
by Fritz Lang, and imagery from Soviet and Nazi propaganda, in a decor in shades of gray.
Schwartz proposes in many places a theater that I call impossible;
that's why I want to put on the play
”, confides Thomas Jolly.
On the other hand, he smiles when he reads that some of his stagings recall
I haven't seen either of them
Despite the cinematographic references, the one who had staged Shakespeare's shattering
for 18 hours in Avignon loves above all "
stay in the artisanal, with the lights as a trademark.
There is no desire for performance.
The only thing that matters to me is when I say to myself:
I don't know how to do it
, and to find solutions with the magic box of the theatre
, ”assures Thomas Jolly.
This is why he is currently enjoying the Opéra Bastille, with its enormous stage, its machinery, its musicians and its choir artists, not to mention the set and costume workshops, which few theaters have.
He remains perplexed by certain critics who find that he would do too much.
“My work is well received by the public but, suddenly, it is sometimes described as
in a pejorative sense.
Why couldn't the spectacular side be simply theatrical?.
I'm not trying to achieve unanimity but, coming from the subsidized public theater, I have to address the widest possible audience, to make them want to be there... and to come back", defends himself
with love Thomas Jolly.