French language theatre production of Jean-Paul Sartre’s one-act, “No Exit”
Professor Scott Taylor
Show: Huis Clos (No Exit in English) by Jean-Paul Sartre (in French)
Place: The Pocket Theater
8312 Greenwood Ave. N.
Seattle, WA 98103
(on the corner of 84th N. and Greenwood Ave. N.)
Dates: Saturday, April 9 at 8:30 p.m.
Friday, April 15 at 8:30 p.m.
Saturday, April 16 at 8:30 p.m.
Tickets: $10 on-line / $14 at the door
Le Théâtre des Enfants Sans Souci (The Theatre of Children without Worries) is presenting a French language production of Jean-Paul Sartre’s famous one-act play, Huis clos (No Exit). Written in 1943 and staged for the first time in 1944 at the Théâtre du Vieux-Colombier in Paris, the play, which Sartre himself considered to be funny, is a veritable symbolic staging of its author’s Existentialist philosophy.
Existentialism was a literary and philosophical movement that dates back to the beginning of the 20th century and “postulates that human beings form the essence of their lives by their own actions, which are not pre-determined by theological, philosophical or moral doctrines.”
The play takes place in Hell, but not the Hell that we traditionally think of, the one that consists of fire, demons, and devices of torture; instead, Sartre’s Hell takes place in an elegant sitting room, with ornate furnishing reminiscent of the Second Empire, with no mirrors, no windows, nothing fragile. There is only a Barbedienne bronze sculpture, a lamp, an old-fashioned paper cutter for books, and the presence of others that serve to distract the three characters, (Joseph Garcin, Inès Serrano, and Estelle Rigault), who have been condemned to spend eternity in this atypical version of Hell.
Scott Taylor, professor of French at Western Washington University, is directing the show. Professor Taylor has assembled a cast of three native French speakers and one trilingual actor from Colombia who also speaks French fluently and who lived in France for many years.
The staging style will be minimalist and traditional, and will highlight the comic aspects of the play. The show is approximately one hour in length.