The Messiah of the Bald People
adaptation by Eric Breton based on the novel Le Messie du peuple chauve by Augustin Billetdoux
DIRECTION AND LIGHTS: Charles Chemin
SCENOGRAPHY: Adrian Damian
COSTUME DESIGN: Robin Chemin
COMPOSER: Eric Breton
MUSICAL DIRECTION: Samuel Jean
COLLABORATION WITH LIGHTS: Gaëtan Seure
COLLABORATION IN SCENOGRAPHY: Razvan Pascu
LIGHT SCULPTURE: H3
MUSICAL STUDIES: Thomas Palmer
PRODUCED BY: Opera Grand Avignon, France, 2020;
PHOTOS BY: STUDIO DELESTRADE / Avignon Cedric Michael
Rich in a complex history, opera, a major form of Western music, already has more than four centuries since its birth. It is to say the innumerable and thorny questions which are confronted by any composer who decides to bring his stone to the edifice. Object of fierce battles, from atonality to neoclassicism, what musical language to choose in these first decades of the 21st century? First the lyrics and then the music, or vice versa? In the worrying era of post-modernism, what message to convey? Should we be tragic or should we be comical? Should we build huge or opt for minimalist conciseness? ... Eric Breton, who did not shy away from any of these questions, first decided, something new, to write an opera dealing with the problem that is undoubtedly the most thorny facing the planet today: ecological disaster. For this, he himself adapted the novel and the play Le Messie du Peuple Chauve by Augustin Billetdoux, very singular texts.
At twenty-five years old, Simon, suffering from baldness, withdraws into himself until he discovers that he was born from a gift. He is the “Son of Humanity”. Attracting a small group of devotees around him, he gradually realizes that the ailment from which he, as well as many other humans, is only one of the many manifestations of growing climate change: deforestation and baldness come from a common origin. Simon then imagines that he must achieve something incredible. Thus he becomes The Messiah of the Bald People whose mission will be to reforest the human soul at the same time as the planet.
Between drama and comedy, The Messiah guides us on the path that leads to disaster or to enchantment. The outcome is up to us…