In France and abroad, we blew out 400 Molière candles

Posted on Saturday January 15, 2022 at 1:40 pm

400 years and not just wrinkles: Molière’s anniversary begins on Saturday in France, but also in other countries, to celebrate the most famous and popular French playwrights.

Baptized on January 15, 1622 (he would have been born a day or two earlier), Molière, whose real name is Jean-Baptiste Poquelin, is such a symbolic author that actor Francis Huster has been fighting for years for his entry into the Pantheon.

An idea recently championed by L.R. presidential candidate Valérie Becresse, who described the 17th-century playwright as “the greatest genius of French theatre”. But the Elysee ruled out such a possibility, estimating in a press release sent to AFP that all figures composed of deities are “post-enlightenment and revolution.”

The festivities will take place especially in the high places that marked his career as a troupe director and playwright, but especially in his ‘home’, the Comédie-Française, born seven years after his death in the continuation of his troupe.

The band will play Molière’s plays exclusively until July, starting on Saturday with “Tartuffe ou l’Hyprocrite,” the original and censored version of the popular play The Lying Lover.

And like every January 15, he will be honored in French: a bust of Molière is officially put on stage, the whole troupe assembled salutes him and everyone sings a line from his plays.

This concert, preceded by Tartuffe, will be broadcast live in cinemas, where in the coming months “Le Malade Imaginaire”, “L’Avare” and “Le Bourgeois Gentilhomme” will be broadcast.

– ‘Everywhere in the air’ –

“I have a friendship with him,” Dominique Blanc, one of the band’s most admired actresses, told AFP.

“Anchor in the area where he lived and where he died, he is everywhere in the air,” smiles the Frenchwoman, who is located near the Royal Palace and the Louvre.

Actor Denis Bodalides asserts that he is not a “superstitist” regarding the presence of Molière’s spirit in the house. “He sleeps in the books so we can play with him (and there, there’s something very vital.”

In Versailles, where Molière was protecting King Louis XIV and in front of him he created some of his allegorical works, many of which will be taken up in their original form: “Comedy – Ballet”, created in collusion with the composer Lully.

In the city that organizes “Le Mois Molière” every summer, a sculpture signed by artist Xavier Veilhan will take place in May and the exhibition “Molière, Factory of National Glory” will open from Saturday.

Another statue will be unveiled on Saturday, this time in Bezinas (Hérault) between Béziers and Montpellier, where Molière resided several times at the start of his career. The Historic Center will be interspersed with excerpts from his comedies or memories of his life and a Molière stamp will be offered for sale at preview.

At the National Center of Theatrical Costumes in Mouline (Auvergne Rhone-Alpes), the exhibition “Molière in Costumes” is expected to end at the end of May and run until the beginning of November. Other exhibitions are scheduled for September by the BNF at the Comédie-Française and the Paris Opera (“Molière en musiques”).

Several conferences will be dedicated to him in France and around the world, from the Sorbonne in Paris to the American University at Yale, via the Università degli Studi di Torino (Torino) or even Florence, according to the dedicated website moliere2022.org

Activities and plays are also planned in Belgium, Switzerland and even in Kansas City, USA.

And in the release, “Molière’s Atlas” was published on Friday, which includes 150 maps and computer graphics on Molière’s life, work and times.

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