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Théâtre de l'Odéon

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Photo: Richard Schroeder

Until the end of this year, Théâtre de l'Odéon is showing La Petite Catherine de Heilbron by Heinrich von Kleist, a 19th-century German playwright. Just like the Petite Catherine herself, the play seems to be driven by supernatural hypnotic and animal forces. The stage direction by Andre Engel is excellent - after two hours in a pitch-black room filled with smoke with a set composed of colossal rocks, one is induced to follow the dream-like logic of the play. Often considered as a precursor to Ibsen, Kleist changed modern drama by exposing his characters in the moments of an emotional crisis, seen as caused by irrational and mysterious forces. 

The year of 2010 will open at Odéon with La Guerre des fils de lumière contre les fils des ténèbres running only from January 6th to the 10th. This unique performance is a spoken and sung oratorio The War of the Jews by a historian Flavius Joseph, who tells the story of the destruction of the Jewish sovereignty by the Roman Empire during the first century BC. According to the historian, who is our sole source concerning these events, the besieged Jews committed suicide after a resistance movement that went on for three years in order to escape forced slavery. In the performance directed by Amos Gitai, seven narrators who move from French, Hebrew, Yiddish, Arab and English embody the exiles from the different countries represented in the story.

On January 8, Théâtre de l'Odéon is hosting a big meeting “From the Tragedy to the tragic,” animated by Jean-Claude Lallias, Daniel Loayza, Olivier Py and Dimitris Dimitriadis, a Greek director who staged two plays at Odeon this season, Dying as a Country and The vertigo of animals before going off to the slaughterhouse coming up in February. This January at Odéon, there will also be a chance to meet with philosophers Michael Foessel and Pierre Zaoui, as well as authors Claude Pujade-Renaud, Cecile Reyboz, Denis Baldwin Beneich and Emmmelene Landon. For more information visit Odéon's website or call at 01 44 85 40 40.

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