Conception : Toméo Vergès
Artistic collaboration : Alvaro Morell
French Chicken is a project combining hands-on education and artistic creation. The project lasts 6 days and includes a workshop and performance component. For the first four days, participants get acquainted with the Man Drake Company's work. The last two days are dedicated to rehearsing and performing the show.
For this project, Toméo Vergès is assisted the last three days by Alvaro Morell.
A dozen participants are invited by the organizer to participate in the project. They are recruited locally with Toméo Vergès' help. A meeting with interested parties can be arranged in advance.
- For this project, we are looking for unique individuals, not necessarily virtuosos. That is why it is not indispensable to recruit dancers: the priority is creating a diverse and motivated group. Participants must commit to completing the full course of study and to participating in the performance.
- The participants are the administrative responsibility of the organizer.
« French Chicken », performance for 12 people and 12 chickens with Toméo Vergès, Alvaro Morell and 10 participants
The duration of the performance varies from 35 to 45 minutes, depending on the venue.
The inspiration for "French Chicken" comes from the solo portion of the Man Drak Company piece, "Chair de Poule," originally performed in 1992 by Alvaro Morell for the Biennale de la Dance de Lyon. The performance encourages the 10 interns (10 men or 10 women) to develop variations on this solo in a non-theatrical space. The idea is to open the piece up to new territories and new meanings by playing with spatial and visual dynamics.
The event can take place outdoors on an esplanade, soccer field, or garden like the one where it was first performed in Strasbourg in 2004 at the Festival des Deux Rives. But it may also be held in unorthodox indoor spaces like museums, entrance halls, college amphitheaters, or other alternative venues. French Chicken was performed in 2005 at the Tannerie de Barjols; in 2006 at the Mains d’œuvres in St. Ouen, at the Palais de Tokyo in Paris, and at the CCN in Rennes; in 2007 at the Espace Khiasma aux Lilas, the Forum de Blanc Mesnil, the Festival Tensdansa de Tarrassa, Barcelone, and the CND in Pantin; in 2008 in Olot (Spain) Teatre Principal, in Girona, (Spain), at the Centro Cultural de la Merçe and at the Festival June Events-Atelier de Paris/Carolyn Carlson, in 2009 at Fira Tarrega (Spain), at the Theater Komedie at Prague, in 2010 at the Patio del Antiguo Instituto at Gijon/ La laboral (Spain), at the Abbaye de Maubuisson – Site d’art contemporain, at the Musée des Beaux-Artts et d’Archéologie at Besançon, and at the Theater Paul Eluard at Bezon, and in 2011 at the Château de la Roche Guyon and at the Verrerie de la Rochère.
Videos of the event are available.