“Miss Knife has always shared the stage, it’s in the very culture of cabaret to be welcoming. From show to show, from opera to operetta, from cabaret to concert, songs are much more than a minor art, they have a depth that can touch all of us, they’re the expression of our humanity. Every song is a world in and of itself. Collected backstage at the theatre, in the repertoire written specifically for Miss Knife and those cross-dressing nights, or in the classic repertoire, they always allow for a kaleidoscope of emotions. Yet to serve them you have to give yourself to them without restraint. On the last day of the 76th edition, beyond my sister and great international artist Angélique Kidjo, who left her mark on the Cour d’honneur and sang with me in Paris and New York, inviting my other musical sisters, Ukraine’s Dakh Daughters, seemed like an obvious choice. They embody hope and courage through art.” Olivier Py
Olivier Py has “lived thirty years with Miss Knife.” He says that when he began this adventure, “there was almost a stigma attached to it; to sing dressed as a woman was extremely scandalous, it could even lead to violence. Today, families come to see Miss Knife and it’s a great source of joy for me.” Since singing is one of the things he’s most afraid of, and not being “brave enough to sing with (his) own face,” he chose to dress up as a woman. Since then, Miss Knife has performed throughout France and all over the world, in clubs and concert halls, accompanied by jazz bands or symphonic orchestras.
Dakh Daughters express powerfully and with humanity the need for freedom of those women from a changing world where the duty to rebel federates acts and thoughts and opposes the bitterness of resignation. Six voices for six committed women who mix traditional Ukrainian melodies with their own music.
Beninese singer Angélique Kidjo is always travelling between three continents, several languages, and musical adventures that open African music to pop, jazz, or contemporary opera. Her fiery temperament and her sense of engagement have made her the symbol of a mutant culture, shifting but with deep roots.
The Orchestre national Avignon-Provence is a renowned player in French musical life and leads public service missions throughout the Sud Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur region. Thanks to its ambitious and open artistic policy and led by its musical director Débora Waldman, the Orchestra always exhibit a deep musical intelligence in its approach to works of all kinds.
With Miss Knife, the Dakh Daughters, Angélique Kidjo and the Orchestre national Avignon-Provence
Direction Vlad Troitskyi for the Dakh Daugthers
Composition Leonard Cohen, Dakh Daughters, Stéphane Leach, Jean-Yves Rivaud, Fadhili William
Arrangements for the orchestra Stéphane Leach, Pierre Thilloy, Nicolas Guiraud, Gast Waltzing
Musical drection Débora Waldman, Samuel Jean
Light, video mapping (Dakh Daughters) Mariia Volkova
Sound (Dakh Daughters) Mickael Kandelman, Bruno Ralle
Production Festival d’Avignon, Dakh Theatre, Drôles de Dames, Les Visiteurs du soir
With the support of the Spedidam for the 76e edition of the Festival d’Avignon
In partnership with France Médias Monde