An outstanding acrobat, a deft juggler, and a gifted choreographer, Yoann Bourgeois has conquered the hearts of audiences around the world. He now returns with new innovations, and he will exhibit the full breadth of his talent in a performance that takes the form of a poetic manifesto. The Les Paroles Impossibles [Impossible Words] project has been blossoming inside him for as long as he can remember and is based on the paradoxical feeling that when words are spoken, they die, which then gives new life to the words...
The latest creation by Yoann Bourgeois is situated at the crossroads of circus and theater, and it embraces a unique scenography that impedes the emergence of all speech. If this performance were punctuation, it would be an ellipsis because this is how one writes when there is a subtext or a hesitation, or an interruption. It is the trace of silence or the failure of words. There is a pronounced search for eloquence in these lingering voids, and it is this eloquence that the artist unfurls like so many secrets by evoking his own impossible words on stage.
Creation, direction, scenography, and performance Yoann Bourgeois assisted by Marie Bourgeois
Contributors to the stage and set design Albin Chavignon and Bénédicte Jolys
Production manager Albin Chavignon
Stage manager and prop design Julien Cialdella
Visual arts - design of masks/prostheses Alain Quercia
Engineering Nicolas Picot
Light design Jérémie Cusenier
Sound design Antoine Garry
Costumes Pierre-Yves Loup-Forest
Artistic oversight Estelle Clément-Béalem and Mélanie Bestel
Coproduction Center for European creation / Ministry of Culture / Maison de la Danse as part of the Biennale de la Danse de Lyon 2020 / Théâtre de la Ville in Paris / Maison de la Musique in Nanterre / MA national theater in Montbéliard / La Comédie de St-Etienne national drama center / Equinoxe national theater in Châteauroux / Le Vellein regional theater in Villefontaine / The 2 Pôles Cirque en Normandie platform (La Brèche in Cherbourg and Le Cirque-Théâtre in Elbeuf) / Escher Theater Luxembourg / Bonlieu Scène national theater in Annecy / Le Théâtre in St Nazaire / Le Tandem national theater in Douai-Arras / Les Théâtres in Aix and Marseille / Archaos national circus center in Marseille / Espace Malraux national theater for Chambéry and the Savoie, Théâtre Firmin Gémier / La Piscine national circus center in Ile-de-France / L’Empreinte national theater in Brive-Tulle / L’Aire Libre CPPC center for contemporary expression / MC2 in Grenoble
Performance rehearsed at CCN2, at Le Tandem, at MC2, at L’Aire Libre CPPC, at the Comédie de St-Etienne, and at L’Empreinte Scène.
Yoann Bourgeois benefits from support from the Fondation BNP Paribas for the development of his projects. The CCN2 is financed by the DRAC Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes regional art fund, the Ministry of Culture and Communication, the Grenoble-Alpes Metro Area, the Isère Department, the Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes Region and receives support from the Institut Français for international tours.
With the support of the SPEDIDAM. SPEDIDAM collects and distributes revenue and manages the rights of performing artists in terms of recording, broadcasting, and reuse of recorded performances.
Yoann Bourgeois grew up in a small village in the Jura area of France, and the rest went by very quickly... He trained at ENACR (the national school of circus arts in Rosny-sous-Bois), then at the CNAC circus arts center in Châlons-en-Champagne while also following the contemporary dance program at the CNDC national dance center in Angers. After his time as a permanent performer in the company of the choreographer Maguy Marin from 2006 to 2010, he set up his own company in 2010.
In recent years, he and his accomplices have been using an uninterrupted creative process to implement a program that consists of defusing time and is called "Attempts to Approach a Suspension Point".
His work is marked by in-depth knowledge of games, in particular games involving vertigo and simulacrum, which he explores and shares through his player’s workshop. His creations are unique because they reinvigorate the traditional artistic number by incorporating various inventions and eloquent physical devices. These spectacular and autonomous devices allow him to perform anywhere, particularly where he is not expected. As a result, in recent years, his Fugue Trampoline performance has become one of the most emblematic shows of the new generation of circus artists.
An outstanding acrobat, he expands his practice by designing multiple devices that seek to make the point of apogee perceptible. Each of his devices revolves around the notion of being suspended, and over the years, he has developed a growing body of work that forms "Attempts to Approach a Point of Suspension". This work is part of a more comprehensive search for a universal and technically rigorous language.
An enthusiast of wide-open spaces, in 2017 he produced an in-situ creation at the Pantheon called La Mécanique de l’Histoire, which was an attempt to approach a suspension point, thanks to an exceptional carte blanche offered by the Monuments Nationaux agency. Amateur videos of the event have become viral sensations and cemented his international reputation.
A tireless explorer of new horizons, in 2018, he and Michel Reilhac created one of the very first choreographic works for virtual reality and mixed reality: the Fugue VR.
Since 2016, he has been co-directing the CCN2 – Grenoble National Choreographic Center with the choreographer Rachid Ouramdane. This unique leadership combination is based on openness to the territory and the decompartmentalization of disciplines.
Yoann Bourgeois, whose life is dedicated to the performing arts, is the first circus artist to lead a national choreography center.