A delightful duet with Fran Espinosa
Franito, the fourth show by Patrice Thibaud, is an absolute delight. The self-taught comedian, formerly of the group Deschiens, transforms himself into the overbearing Spanish mother of a flamenco prodigy. A few accessories in a small Andalusian kitchen, the beaded curtains, two chairs, a table, a broom and a folding screen set the scene, while the miming talent of Patrice Thibaud and Fran Espinosa’s dancing do the rest. It’s a festival of mimicry and facial expressions, each more ridiculous than the next, and day-to-day situations imbued with burlesque and flamenco, naturally. Franito is like its creator: hilarious. Masquerading as a heavy-breasted mama in her house slippers, Thibaud’s heft is a counterpoint to Franito’s lightness, though he/she surprises us with unexpected moments of élan and we can’t help but succumb to her charm despite her Decidedly bad temper. As for Franito, he spins and sings, in his turquoise socks and matching red trousers and shoes, withstanding the onslaught of his partner. The two make quite a pair and have composed their duet full of arcs and curves, the one whirling about, and the other writhing and self-flagellating. Nothing escapes the light-hearted mockery of Fran Espinosa and Patrice Thibaud in their concoction of flamenco and burlesque, but their love of the prestigious art of flamenco - listed as a UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity - shines through. For Patrice Thibaud, his special relationship began at the age of two when he saw his first show, and he later lived with a flamenco dancer.
His devastating humour illuminates this art he so admires and the art Fran Espinosa so perfectly masters. In the background, he conjures an improbable assembly of Pablo Picasso, Fernando Botero, Louis De Funès, Benny Hill, El Güito and Concha Piquer, not to mention Don Quixote. In a poignant and poetic moment, Franito transforms his unwitting mother into the Cervantes hero, with a strainer for a helmet, a broom and a whip. The essence of the show is found in this single scene, both comic and emotional.
[RUN TIME] 1HR10
PIÈCE POUR 1 DANSEUR, 1 COMÉDIEN, 1 MUSICIEN CRÉATION 2015 - Conception Patrice Thibaud Mise en scène Patrice Thibaud, Jean-Marc Bihour Chorégraphie Fran Espinosa Musique originale et guitare Cédric Diot Interprétation Patrice Thibaud, Fran Espinosa Danse et chant Fran Espinosa Création lumières Alain Paradis Création costumes Nathalie Coutaud Production Théâtre de Nîmes Scène conventionnée danse contemporaine Avec le soutien de la ville de Nîmes, le ministère de la Culture et de la Communication / DRAC Languedoc-Roussillon-Midi- Pyrénées, le Conseil régional Languedoc-Roussillon- Midi-Pyrénées, le Conseil départemental du Gard Spectacle accueilli en résidence au plateau danse du collège Condorcet à Nîmes. Remerciements Marie Duret-Pujoj / Société Calicot Productions