« I have great interest for everything that lives on the fringes of society, I believe that the norm feeds itself within margins. Marginality is therefore necessary for the norm to define itself. » - Stéphane Crête
© Philémon Crête
« Stéphane Crête, is the ridicule, the freedom of writing, the magical writing that allows the human soul to be penetrated to its furthest, in its trashiness, its impetuous surges, its multiple unthinkable variations, its lies and betrayals. »
« The human being is a machine with emotions,
and Stéphane Crête is an excellent engineer. »
- Benoit Lacombe, MWEBZINE
STÉPHANE CRÊTE is a transdisciplinary artist, author, multi-talented man of the theatre, teacher, ritualist, and performer who has had an astonishing and atypical career. For over 30 years he has been as at home in mainstream productions (Dans une galaxie près de chez vous, Séquelles, Toute la vie, Jeune Juliette) as he is in experimental theatre.
Through a body of work intended to be free of conventional labels – and which, as a result, is often considered impossible to classify – Stéphane Crête has devoted his career to exploring the great themes that are dear to him: the transgression of moral conventions (often linked to expressions of sexuality and death), trance and altered states of consciousness, and the dance between the profane and the sacred. He is passionate in his work and research, and emerges with creations that try to shake up the audience’s perceptions and that question the limits of representation. Most of his theatrical work in recent years (1996-2016) has been in collaboration with the company Momentum where he was co-artistic director.
CONCEPTOR, DIRECTOR AND PERFORMER Stéphane Crête
TECHNICAL DIRECTOR, STAGE MANAGEMENT
AND LIGHTING DESIGN David Poulin
SETS, COSTUMES AND ACCESSORIES Robin Brazil
SOUNDTRACK Éric Forget
EXTERIOR EYE Didier Lucien
PUPPET ADVISOR Marcelle Hudon
PRODUCTION Cynthia Bouchard-Gosselin
PHOTOS Philémon Crête
DURATION : 1h05 minutes
CREW : 1 Performer + 1 Technical Director + 1 Stage Manager
STAGE DIMENSIONS : Width 20' (proscenium arch) / Depth 20' (zero point to backdrop) / Height 12’ (under the grid)
(6.1m x 6.1m x 3.66m)
SET-UP : 2 blocks of 4 hours
AUDIENCE SIZE : Small and medium size venues
SOLO PIECE FOR A HUMAN AND A SILICONE DOLL
Alone on the stage, a human tries to find some relief from his solitude by spending time with a human-sized silicon doll. In almost ritual contemplation, the man unwraps the doll and then assembles it, in the hopes that he can bring it to life. His attempts at seduction and tender gestures are all for naught: intimacy with this inert body is impossible, and his attempts only lead to disappointment and bitterness. Being alone frees him from any moral constraints that could be imposed by others. He finds himself with a worshipped idol that he can only desecrate, so he explores the limits of what is possible in a fight combining violence, desire and transgression.
The man desperately seeks to give meaning – a life – to this inanimate object. His overwhelming loneliness eventually culminates, in a way, in a funeral ritual, as if going into mourning is the only way he can find peace.
Through the sacrificial death of the doll, the dance between Eros and Thanatos leads the man to confront his own divine nature and, finally, accept his journey as a human being.
Existing in the margins between performance art and theatre, Numain (a play on words in French combining the words for «nude» and «human») takes up the same themes as Esteban (Stéphane Crête’s first solo show): solitude, the limits of immodesty, and insanity. Tinged with more gravity and driven by ethical and humanist questions, Numain is an artistic happening full of spirituality, that is nevertheless not without humour and creativity.
« … a silent performance that plays with the limits of what it means to be human, also reminding us that Crête experiments with the stage in a way that is far too rare . Stéphane Crête creates a universe that is open to interpretation, carried by a fragility as unexpected as it is a propos. »
- François Jardon-Gomez, LE DEVOIR
WHERE TO SEE NUMAIN NEXT
Since COVID-19 has affected the entire 20-21 season – Dates will be announced shortly after the cultural field returns to normal.