Ouest France4 April 2018
Cirque Plume’s La dernière saison is a dream
“On a vu”
It was a first for seven-year-old Billie. On Friday evening in Rezé, the young girl from Haute-Indre discovered Cirque Plume. The rising of the curtain was tenderly awaited, kicking off a run of 28 shows in the Quartier Château.
Did Billie feel a bit of stage fright? Nestled between her grandparents, a holey blanket against her, the brunette looked up at the stage.
The show had not yet started, but already, something was being told. It began with a tree with long bare branches, with swirling autumn leaves, with a golden and enveloping light. A plastic bag invited itself on the set, breaking the quiet harmony of this first scene in the form of a prelude.
Marie, Billie’s grandmother from Nantes, proved a loyal fan of the Franche-Comté troupe: "They are not in the performance, but the aesthetic is theirs. Magic, emotion, beauty: I did not want to miss their last tour."
Marie confessed, however, that she does not love everything about Plume. She sometimes “finds them to be chatterboxes. To the point of leaving little room for the imagination."
Paul, her husband, reminisced: "I must have seen them six or seven times. The first time was in Dijon, in their region. These pioneers of new circus have inspired many troupes."
Hubert, 67, settled down hungrily in the stands. No way this white-haired fellow would miss La dernière saison. However, he doubted whether Bernard Kudlak’s troupe would really exit the circus ring:" They tried pulling that one on us before."
Hubert was confident about Plume’s ability to impress and to touch. "You have to let go, get into their world," he explained. "With them, we’re not behind a glass wall: it’s like we’re part of the show."
Seated by his side, Maryvonne, 66, said she "feels good" when she is near them. "I find my child’s soul. No doubt because of this wonderful side. What they offer is beyond circus. "
Hubert wanted to remind us that Plume, via dangerous acts, also knows how to put itself in danger. For him, "It’s not just theater. The artists perform feats of physical prowess. "
Anne, 47, saw them "a long time ago" in Saint-Herblin. Images of "great poetic strength" dance in her memory. That day, she "discovered circus without animals. It was full of audacity and great finesse.”
When Rezéenne learned that Plume was announcing its final tour, she hurried. "It was madness. From the beginning, seats were being snatched. Why did I miss the last tours of the company? I’m so mad at myself,” fumed the red-cloaked fan.
La dernière saison has begun. Acts of subtle beauty unfold: baroque scenes that are hilarious or bordering on disturbing, like the man-gorilla-dog-horse (the brilliant Cyril Casmèze) who abolishes the line between human and animal. And so what if “La dernière saison,” an ecological fable, is a little hotchpotch? The charm works.
To describe Plume is to evoke a tribe from a forest of shadows. Wild creatures, gentle marching bands and funny zebras come and go with pomp, all to the rhythm of the seasons.
An iguana-woman of unheard-of grace (Analia Serenelli, our favorite) lures a juggler of feathers. A Santa Claus gets angry. Machos show off their muscles. An ibis with red socks lays eggs. A skier remains entangled in skis-mops (the irresistible Anaëlle Molinario).
Time flies. We laugh at the Plume-style clowning, we tremble at the virtuosity of the female acrobats — all of them captivating, and we pray that this dernière saison is not really a last season. Then, from the middle of the stands, we hear little Billie exclaim, "It this a dream or what?"
And that says it all.