Ruffec: dancing with books
“Dance with books” invests a new library in each performance. How do you adapt to different places?
Mustapha Ridaoui. Every time we arrive at least two hours before the show to set up the equipment and see how we reconfigure things. It’s really a constant adjustment because we play in multimedia libraries of very different sizes, sometimes with very small spaces that force us to review scenery, ins and outs.
This choreography is a lighter version of one of your previous creations “Index” that was performed in theaters. Why did you want to make a short version of it?
Basically, we wanted to pay homage to the books. “Index” is played on set, with an imposing library and equipment that is difficult to transport. But we said to ourselves: wouldn’t it be fantastic to offer a version in a real library, an intimate place where we can engage with books, body and soul? We kept our red armchair for the scenography, and on the other hand, we bring our own books because we abuse them too much to borrow the ones from the Ruffec media library: ours must be sturdy and easy to handle! Just in case, we always bring linen: because recently we found ourselves in a media library with a carpet. And there, in hip-hop, fire!
Does it make it possible to reach a different audience, which would not necessarily come to the theater?
Yes, some who come to borrow books sometimes discover the play when it starts. There is a request to leave the agreed places. With this short format, we are always on the spot, without downtime. We often have a family audience close to home: we step over people, play with them, give them books, receive them back…
Do you see it as a challenge to promote books in the digital age?
Yes, we want to pay tribute to this object, so light and easy to transport, which offers a wonderful means of escape, which has a scent and from which emanates magic. When you run out of battery on your tablet, on the other hand, you’re cooked! We try to explain that to the children in the show. However, my relationship with books was not simple: I discovered that my parents could not read when I learned to read myself in the first grade. it made me reject books that I had internalized as hurting my parents. It was only when I became a parent that I regained my taste for reading, reading stories to my children. That’s all we’re talking about in this small format: a heavy bag full of books on the way to school, a book that leads the way, but also a light book that makes you dream.
(1) Friday, November 18 at 7 p.m. in the La Canopée media library in Ruffec. Free. Complete.