ZEMIRE ET AZOR
The transformation from childhood
What is the use ofthe Fairy Tales? Here is a subject on which a lot of psychoanalysts are debating since Freud. According to Bruno Bettelheim, in its Psychoanalysis of the fairy tales, they answer in a precise and irrefutable way to children by informing them of the tests to come and the efforts to be achieved.
The principal stake of the story written by Mme Le Prince de Beaumont La Belle et la Bête (Beauty and the Beast) is, in a latent way, to make comprehensible to the child the existence of an alarming bestial sexuality of which the fear can be overcome only by going beyond theOedipus complex. Belle overcomes its fear for the Beast and, with the agreement of her father, transfers her Oedipien love in a more "conventional" love for a person of her own age.
The Beast is the representation of aterrifying sexuality and of the taboo which it represents for the young girl but it is by accepting its sexuality like normal (Belle declaring her love for the Beast) that the enchantment dissipate and make the beast transform into a Prince. Far from her father, the girl will learn how to listen to her own feelings and to decide which direction to give to her life.
The universe of the baroque Opera regularly transports us in the world of fairyhoods where the Splendid is a substitute of life and conscious but this time we think that it would be interesting to transport the audience in the world of the Unconscious where the surreal is a help to the child to channel her impulses and can accept the problematic nature of life.
The precept of Freud is that the Man can manage to give a direction to his existence only if it fights courageously against what appears to him to be crushing inequalities. Such is exactly the message of the fairy tales.
It is through a surrealist baroque universe that we propose to open the drawers of the Unconscious.
All this being said, the production of Zemire et Azor is entirely faithful to the story of the opera and the drama is made extremely clear. The baroque flavour is respected with the intervention of dancers who integrate the action. Far from being a cold intellectual vision it enhances the pleasure of the imagination.
Our goal is to look through a different angle at a story that is world known and bring the audience to rediscover a fairy tale that will bring them back to their childhood.