Suzanne is driving an old Peugeot estate car on the A3 motorway in Seine-Saint-Denis. She stops to check the tyre pressure, the garage is deserted and closed for demolition. A man appears, guarding the place. Images emerge without warning. Suzanne leaves, drives away and returns. Amadi is not always a guard in the Parisian suburbs, he is a young Nigerian filmmaker who has come to explore the archives of Jacques Foccart, De Gaulle's advisor on African affairs, for his documentary on Biafra. As the days go by, they search, accompany each other and invent a little protocol for visiting each other's past. In this outlying building site, landscapes overlap, memories and temporalities flow along a puddle of diesel oil with strange powers that spread over the station.
How far means "hello how are you" in Nigerian pidgin or "how far distance-wise" in British English. And it is distance that this text deals with, the periphery, and living together. Laure Bachelier-Mazon's text works on rhythms, sounds, the blend of languages, history and current events. It is a question of working on an appropriation of the past and the present, of the language of the other. Opening a space for encounters. Blurring geographies. Combining languages, French, English, Pidgin.
I am thinking of a set design based on recycled materials, which have been transformed from their original use, like the service station where Suzanne and Amadi meet in the text. The 504, which is also a character, will be described in snippets, like the remains of a dream - a steering wheel in the middle of the vegetation. Especially as the imaginary of the text considers the subject of fluctuating memories and their reconstruction and questions the economic relationship between the north and the south. We plan to deal with the metamorphoses of space contained in the text and its fantastic dimension by means of a light scenographic device - the dramaturgy will be structured by the light and the relationship to the music.
Coproduction le Grrranit Scène National Belfort, Centre Dramatique National Besançon Franche-Comté (production en cours)
With the support of le Colombier–Cie Langajà groupement à Bagnolet, l’Arojah Royal Theatre (Abuja, Nigeria) et du festival Univers des mots (Conakry, Guinée)
day-for-night is subsidised by the DRAC Bourgogne Franche-Comté and by the Bourgogne-Franche-Comté region. The company is supported in its projects by the Departmental Council of Doubs and the City of Besançon. The company have a DGCA mentoring network with Louise Legendre and May Hilaire.
Text Laure Bachelier-Mazon
Concept and direction Anne Monfort
English translation and artistic collaboration May Hilaire
With Pearl Manifold (actress) Marion Sicre (lyric singer) un comédien(cast in progress)
Music creation Núria Gimenez Comas
Administration and production Yohan Rantswiler
Production and booking Florence Francisco et Gabrielle Baille – Les Productions de la Seine
Press relations Olivier Saksik – Elektronlibre