Claire Ducreux’s Réfugiée Poétique is an affectingly whimsical manifestation of human goodness. Performing in a circus-vaudeville form reminiscent of Chaplin’s Tramp, Ducreux enters the stage shivering. Snow tumbles around her red umbrella. Upstage there is a white plaster sculpture by Eduardo Cuadrado. Ducreux has a one sided relationship with him. Every action she takes attempts to warm the white plaster with human compassion and tenderness. Ducreux then turns her eyes to us.
Between elegant dances, which cleverly integrate her industrial setting, she un-self-pityingly gives us all she has. She offers her coat, her food, and her kindness. Silently on stage she enthusiastically guides selected audience members through interactions. This review will be shorter than most as I am actively avoiding specifics for those planning to attend. Simply know that in both choreographed movements and audience interaction there is at once elegant mise en scène and frolicking inventiveness.
Lights by Rafel Roca assist well in Ducreux’s construction of an at turns tranquil and disrupted space. Jorge Sarraute, David Moreno and Mayte Martín’s original music sets an enchanting world for Ducreux to explore. All in all Réfugiée Poétique is a love letter sent from Ducreux to all she sees. With nothing in her pockets, her Tramp still has a reflex to take care of those around her. Hopefully this reflex is as contagious as her stage presence.
Réfugiée Poétique is currently in performance at the Théâtre de l’Oulle at 10:30.
PS: No French necessary.