The plays “The Circle of Disappeared Poets” and “4,211 km” were doubly rewarded at the 35th Molières ceremony

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Aïla Navidi speaks after her piece “4,211 km” received an award during the Molières ceremony, on May 6, 2024, at the Folies Bergère in Paris. THOMAS SAMSON / AFP

Dedicated to the memory of Bernard Pivot, writer and television presenter who died on Monday May 6 at the age of 89, the Molières ceremony honored Francis Huster on Monday evening and notably rewarded his plays Dead Poets Societyas well as 4,211km by Aïla Navidi, which evokes the exile of an Iranian family. But this 35e edition was also marked by several political and societal positions.

First of all against the budget cuts which affect the world of culture. “Thank you to everyone except Mme the minister ! »launched the mistress of ceremonies, the comedian Caroline Vigneaux, under the eyes of Rachida Dati present in the Folies Bergère room. “You get us back the 204 million euros [en moins sur le budget de la culture], you don’t touch intermittency. And we’ll release you in time for Paris City Hall! », she quipped. An actor from the CGT spectacle also warned against “theater companies (…) bankrupt, tens of thousands of jobs (…) threatened”. “It’s a massive layoff plan that doesn’t say its name”.

The Minister of Culture, Rachida Dati, did not speak, https://twitter.com/datirachida/status/1787522897038225793 in which she assured that “the regime of intermittency (…) must be preserved”. She also advocated more “collaborations” between public and private theater. The conclusions of a report on the subject are expected this summer.

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Honorary Molière for Francis Huster

These Molières were also an opportunity for live performance to support the fight against sexist and sexual violence, via the broadcast of a giant trombinoscope on which one could read “You are not alone”. Coincidentally, this Monday was the day on which the indictment of playwright and writer Pierre Notte, named several times at this ceremony in the past, was revealed for the rape of one of his former high school theater students in 2004 to 2005, which he refutes by arguing for a real ” love story “ with the teenager.

Receiving an honorary Molière, Francis Huster, 76, praised “the real heroines” plays by Molière, his female characters, in a tirade which earned him a standing ovation. And to quote “Agnès, Elvire, Armande, Célimène, Toinette, Nicole, Dorine” who dared “denounce and triumph over these cowards, Tartuffe rapist, hypocrite Orgon, Arpagon avaricious pervert, Jourdain obsessed with money and sex, Arnolphe predator pedophile, Argan deranged and even Dom Juan killer without remorse”.

Read also | Francis Huster: “To be French is to take myself for Molière”

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Comedian Sophia Aram, who received the Molière for Humor, spoke about the conflict in the Middle East between Israel and Hamas. “If we are all here calling for a ceasefire, how can we be in solidarity with the thousands of civilian deaths in Gaza without also being in solidarity with the Israeli victims? »she said.

Read also: Article reserved for our subscribers An aperitif with Sophia Aram: “I’m less and less funny, but I don’t care”

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Call to release Iranian rapper Toomaj Salehi

On the rewards side, the coin 4,211km by Aïla Navidi, which recounts the exile of an Iranian family and their fight for freedom, was recognized twice: best private theater show and Molière for female revelation. The opportunity for director and actress Olivia Pavlou Graham to call for the release of Iranian rapper Toomaj Salehi sentenced to death in his country.

Read also | Article reserved for our subscribers Mobilization for rapper Toomaj Salehi, who risks the death penalty in Iran

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Named six times, the piece Dead Poets Society, inspired by the American film by Peter Weir (1989) with Robin Williams as a non-conformist professor, received two awards: best director and male revelation for Ethan Oliel.

Vincent Dedienne received the Molière for best actor in a private theater show for An Italian straw hat. On the public theater side, it’s Micha Lescot (Richard II), who won the prize.

The Molière for actress in a private theater performance was awarded to Cristiana Reali for A Streetcar Named Desire. The Molière of the actress in a public theater performance went to Vanessa Cailhol for Zucchini who was nominated seven times.

Read also | Article reserved for our subscribers In the theater, the stories of Gurshad Shaheman, Aïla Navidi and Emilienne Malfatto bear witness to the lives of women in the Middle East

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The World with AFP

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