An evening of theater on the web begins about twenty minutes before the virtual curtain rises… By reading the comments of the spectators in the right margin of our computer screen. Something you can’t do in a real theater, unless you listen to people’s conversations… which is a little rude.
“This is my first viewing of a play. I look forward ! Looks like it’s a female audience only. Where is the B-28 seat? ? Good show everyone! »… These comments are like a prelude to the Harpagon Theater show, which brought together 76 spectators (there were also two latecomers on the site, as at the theater!) Last Friday, to attend a live performance of Viruses and Versa. It is the first part of a theatrical series of five episodes broadcast in Zoom on the web, created to replace a canceled production of the company, confinement requires.
This comedy by Claude Paiement on life in times of pandemic is defended by Sylvain Marcel and Frédéric Desager. This is a short play featuring two lonely Internet users who will engage in an improbable dialogue.
On a black screen background, a grumpy man appears in front of his keyboard, absorbed in his virtual life. When suddenly an intruder comes to his Zoom, because he needs to talk to someone, in order to feel less alone, despite the cold distance from the internet. In the fashion of the absurd, Sylvain Marcel personifies the white clown, obscure and grumpy; while the august, naive and zany, is played by Desager. They refer to a virus, then to a negative test, and also to an antidote to virtual life, so as not to get carried away by a “data” machine that crushes the soul …
The text is funny, but too short, both in duration (barely 30 minutes) and in its purpose. The metaphor of planetary catastrophe could have been further developed. In the end, we won’t learn anything new about the eternal need to get closer when everything changes, in the Far Web as in reality.
In the second part, the performers and the author answer questions from the audience. Claude Paiement, who also directed the two actors, hinted that the next episode of his theatrical series will have more substance. We wish him to deepen his message with this new medium.
Viruses and versa by Claude Paiement. With Sylvain Marcel and Frédéric Desager. Duration: 30 minutes. Posted on the web.
Episode 2 of Viruses and Versa will be offered on January 29 and February 5 and 12 at 7 p.m. The show runs every Friday until April 16. The public has 48 hours to watch the show after the performance.
> Book your tickets for episode 2