This reading-demonstration was created for the Grignan “Festival de la Correspondance” in July 2013. The strength of the public reaction prompted us to perform this unusual show once again.
The performance is a reading of letters between Marcel Duchamp and his friend Henri-Pierre Roché, covering the years 1922-52. Three characters sit around a table: Marcel Duchamp, who reads his letters; the “unmarried woman,” who comments, and the out-of-frame subject, who also looks after the accounting. The roles are flexible and sometimes switch around.
Although Marcel Duchamp was quite close to the surrealists, his letter-writing is grounded in realism; he corresponds with Henri-Pierre Roché about practical questions, from Paris or New York.
Gérald Stehr is the instigator and author behind this project on Duchamp's correspondence. He compiled the extracts and left us with complete freedom of adaptation. We opted for the greatest simplicity and stripped down stage direction. Very little dance, no music, a few symbolic objects and the projection of one of Marcel Duchamp's films. “Reduce, reduce, reduce, was my obsession,” as Duchamp used to say.
DIRECTION AND INTERPRETATION: PHILIPPE DECOUFLÉ, ALICE ROLAND AND CHRISTOPHE SALENGRO
ADAPTATION: GÉRALD STEHR
LIGHT: PATRICE BESOMBES
Projection of Anemic Cinema from Marcel Duchamp. The text is loosely based on Correspondances Marcel Duchamp - Henri-Pierre Roché 1918-1959, Scarlett et Philippe Reliquet, éditions Mamco
Production Cie DCA - Philippe Decouflé, with the agrement of the Marcel Duchamp Association.
This «lecture-demonstration» Has been created for and with the «Festival de la correspondance» of Grignan, the 7th of July 2013
Thanks to Anne Rotenberg, Jacqueline Matisse Monnier, Antoine Monnier, Paul Franklin
Decouflé smashingly succeeds in extracting every bit of joy out of this wealth of material... this mini-show cum reading cum obstacle course with a nod & wink triumphs as a genuine success. Unmissable.
Le Point, January 2014
Hurry up to see this show, a miracle of good humor, intelligence, fantasy, and learning. Decouflé, flanked by Christophe Salengro and Alice Roland, gives a reading of letters from Duchamp to his dear Totor, as well as others texts from the maestro, adapted by Gerard Stehr. Here, we can get an understanding for his painting, his manner, his relish for experimentation, his detachment from art, his passion for chess, and his sense of irony. The two worlds of Decouflé and Duchamp collide with impertinence, imagination, and fantasy – it's a real treat.
Le Figaroscope, January 2014