Attacks on « Sur le concept du visage du fils de Dieu » by Romeo Castellucci, at the Théâtre de la Ville/Paris

Posted by Administrator (wb_admin) on 08/11/2011
2011-13 >> Europe&USA&Canada

Support Committee for Freedom to Present the Romeo Castellucci’s Production at the Théâtre de la Ville in Paris
Here below is the press release of the
Théâtre de la Ville  (Paris), after the incidents that happened following the representations of Romeo Castellucci's play.

Since its première on the 20th October, the performances of « Sur le concept du visage du fils de Dieu » by Romeo Castellucci, at the Théâtre de la Ville, have given rise to serious events.
An organised group of fundamentalist Christians proclaiming to be linked to the Action française (a far right French movement) has been trying to prevent access to the Théâtre de la Ville by blocking its doors, attacking and threatening the public, spraying them with oil, throwing tear gas, eggs and stink bombs while their accomplices, militants of Renouveau Français (another far right movement), enter the theatre, interrupt the start of the performance, occupying the stage and presenting their battle cry, “Enough of Christianophobia!”.
L’AGRIF (association against anti-white and anti-christian racism) had demanded that the production be legally prohibited, but this was dismissed by the Tribunal de Grande Instance on 18 October 2011.
The police stand every day at the entrance to the theatre and we have been obliged to call them inside several times in order to evacuate those occupying the stage, as we are careful to avoid confrontation between these invaders and a public outraged by such actions.
The staff of the theatre is determined and effective in these distressing circumstances and despite numerous incidents and interruptions, the performances have been able to go ahead so far.
That these groups of violent and organised individuals defending religion against a so-called “christianophobia” would be linked to religious or political movements, needs investigation. In any case, this behaviour for us is evidence of fanaticism, that enemy of freedom and the Enlightenment which France, in its most noble periods, has fought so well against. The theatre has very often been a decisive space for these struggles.
We cannot stand by and do nothing. Such actions are serious; they show a new, clearly fascist direction. These groups of individuals hasten to automatically declare “blasphemous” productions which are not directed against believers, nor against Christianity. Theatre critics of important media, not making any mystery of their Christian faith, praised the production without reserve at its presentation in Avignon. We invite you also to read the statement by Romeo Castellucci, published in the programme distributed every night to the public, in order to understand his artistic intentions.
We do not intend to give way to these hideous threats and the production will be maintained despite all attempts at intimidation. We invite the pubic exercise its freedom to attend. The production, co-produced by the Théâtre de la Ville, will be performed until the 30th October after which it will recommence, in the context of our partnership, at the Centquatre from 2 to 6 November.
It is worth mentioning that the production has already been presented without any difficulty in Germany, Belgium, Norway, the UK, Spain, Russia, the Netherlands, Greece, Switzerland, Poland and Italy and that it is only in France where such demonstrations of intolerance have taken place.

We have therefore created a support committee addressed to all people of good will– and this expression is particularly welcome - in order to defend, beyond Romeo Castellucci’s production, the freedom of expression, the freedom of artists and freedom of thought, against this new fascism.
Emmanuel Demarcy-Mota
Director and the staff of the Théâtre de la Ville.

Emmanuel Demarcy-Mota
Director and the staff of the Théâtre de la Ville.

Support can be sent via e-mail to the following address :

* * *
Initial signatories :

Patrice Chéreau, theatre director
Stéphane Hessel
Michel Piccoli, actor
Sylvie Testud, actor
Sasha Waltz, choreographer, Berlin
Arnaud Desplechin, filmmaker
Luc Bondy, theatre director
Jean-Michel Ribes, writer, theatre director
Bulle Ogier, actor
Barbet Schroeder, filmmaker
Juliette Binoche, actor
Elodie Bouchez, actor
Claude Régy, theatre director
Christophe Girard, President, Centquatre
Joseph Melillo, Director, Brooklyn Academy of Music, New York
Stéphane Lissner, Director, la Scala, Milan
Dominique Mercy, Director, Tanztheater Wuppertal Pina Bausch
Brigitte Jaques Wajeman, theatre director
Jean-Claude Milner, philosopher
Pascal Bonitzer, filmmaker
Jacques-Alain Miller, psychanalyste
Judith Miller, philosopher
Marc Olivier Dupin, composer
Peter de Caluwe, General Director, la Monnaie/De Munt, Brussels
Christian Longchamp, Assistant Artistic Director and Director of Dramaturgy, la Monnaie/ De Munt, Brussels
Jean-Luc Choplin, Director, Théâtre du Châtelet
Yorgos Loukos, Director, Festival of Athens
Simon McBurney, theatre director, UK
José Manuel Goncalves, Director, Centquatre
François Le Pillouer, President, SYNDEAC
Lloyd Newson, choreographer, UK
Anne Delbée, writer and theatre director
Jack Ralite, former minister
Ushio Amagatsu, choreographer, Japan
Georges Banu, Honorary President of the International Association of Theatre Critics
Monique Veaute, President of the Foundation RomaEuropa
Fabrizio Grifasi, Director, RomaEuropa
Claus Peymann, Director, Berliner Ensemble

Last changed: 29/11/2011 at 19:52

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