Dire ce qu'on ne pense pas dans des langues qu'on ne parle pas

by Bernardo Carvalho

  • Theatre
  • Show
The 2014 archive

Antônio Araújo

São Paulo - Brussels - Avignon / Created in 2014

The work of Bernardo Carvalho is published by éditions Métailié and éditions Rivages. "Dire ce qu’on ne pense pas dans des langues qu’on ne parle pas" is a command of writing and creation within the framework of the project "Villes en Scène/Cities on Stage".
Dire ce qu'on ne pense pas dans des langues qu'on ne parle pas © Christophe Raynaud de Lage


Based on a text written by Brazilian author Bernardo Carvalho at the request of Antônio Araújo, Say what you don't mean, in a language you don't speak is the Teatro da Vertigem's look at the economic crisis, and a response to the invitation to create a show within the framework of the European project Villes en Scène/Cities on Stage. Set in the reality of today's Europe, the stage version of this theatrical novel tells of the return to the continent of an old man who, having lived here as a political exile during the brutal military dictatorship of the 1970s in Brazil, now comes back with his daughter, an economist. Hoping to find a cure for the aphasia he suffers from, she accompanies him to various meetings: with immigration officials, old union friends, doctors, economists, businessmen... who all draw the picture of a fractured new Europe he doesn't recognise. By switching the place of representation and performing the play in seats of monetary power, be they real or symbolic, like the Brussels Stock Exchange or the Hôtel des Monnaies in Avignon, Antônio Araújo forces us to rethink our relationship to those economic centres. Far from any dogmatic discourse and always on a human scale—that of women and men who run into each other, talk, dream, or worry—Say what you don't mean, in a language you don't speak could be “a long night of discussion, in the middle of a crisis, when no one knows what to do anymore, or who was supposed to represent whom or what.”

First a journalist, before becoming a novelist and short story writer, Bernardo Carvalho is an indefatigable traveller. As a correspondent for the newspaper Folha de São Paulo, he lived in Paris and New York. It is with Aberration, a short story collection published in 1993, that he first met success. His novels, referred to by some as “documentary fictions,” are eight in number, and include Nine Nights, that follows an anthropologist in 1939, O Filho da Mãe (The Mother's Son), about young Russians, and Mongolia. He is here working with the Teatro de Vertigem, for whom he already wrote the text BR-3.

Jean-François Perrier, April 2014


Direction Antônio Araújo
Text Bernardo Carvalho
Translation Pauline Alphen
Scenography Thiago Bortolozzo
Dramaturgy Sílvia Fernandes, Antonio Durán
Lighting Guilherme Bonfanti
Sound Thomas Turine
Trumpet Ludovic Bouteligier
Video Fred Vaillant
Costumes Frédéric Denis, Laurence Hermant
Direction Assistant  Eliana Monteiro, Maria Clara Ferrer

With Roberto Audio Le pasteur, un homme musulman, Richard (l'assistant du commissaire), un client du bar, un manifestant et le touriste 1
Jean-Pierre Baudson
Le fonctionnaire de l'immigration 2, le syndicaliste, le commissaire, un clochard, un client du bar, un économiste et Homme (joggeur) Claire Bodson Fille
Didier de Neck Père, le père de la gamine et un client du bar
Vanja Godée Femme enceinte du fonctionnaire, une autre économiste 2, choeur des langues, la Gamine, la propriétaire de l'appartement, la leader fasciste, Femme (joggeuse) et la guide touristique
Nicolas Gonzales Le fonctionnaire de l'immigration, l'escroc et un manifestant
Vincent Hennebicq L'homme d'affaires, Robert, le médecin, choeur SDF, un homme à la mallette rouge, le consul et le médiateur
Luciana Schwinden La bourgeoise parvenue, une économiste 1, une femme voilée, la secrétaire de l'ambassade et touriste 2

and the chorus Serge Attougha, Mamadou Diattou, Sophie Mangin, Valérie Paüs, Amandine Richaud, Florent Terrier, William Vity



Production Festival d'Avignon, Théâtre National (Bruxelles) with the collaboration of la compagnie Teatro da Vertigem
With the support of Programme Culture de l'Union européenne within the framework of the project Villes en Scène/Cities on Stage and SPEDIDAM
With the help of Petrobras and Consulat de France at São Paulo

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