For five years, every Saturday, from 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. – at the time when, for live shows, everything is about to begin – Aurélie Charon invites France Culture listeners to hear the words of artists (actors, dancers, circus performers, etc.). Sometimes she receives them in the studio, sometimes she opens the doors of the performance halls to us, invites us to rehearsals, in short offers an in situ recording in reportage mode which gives us a different understanding.

The bet: that the listener comes away different, modified, as we are after certain performances. The program broadcast on March 23 is a remarkable illustration of this. Recorded at the Théâtre du Soleil, it brings together Ariane Mnouchkine, founder of the place; Oksana Leuta, actress who has become, since Vladimir Putin’s invasion of Ukraine in February 2022, a fixer for journalists; and Gal Hurvitz, director and founder of the Etty Hillesum Youth Theater in Jaffa, Israel. Oksana Leuta completed an internship with part of Ariane Mnouchkine’s troupe in kyiv, Ukraine, in March 2023; Gal Hurvitz spent a year at the Théâtre du Soleil in 2006.

When asked “Are you okay? “, asked at the very beginning of the show, Ariane Mnouchkine responds: “I’m doing better than the world, that’s for sure. » Then, and in turn, each says what it is like to do theater in a country at war. Raw voice (Oksana Leuta witnessed the massacres, and one of the journalists she accompanied, Frédéric Leclerc-Imhoff, was killed) says that it has been two years since she has been able to read literature. And also that “the imagination is a muscle that must be atrophied in times of war so as not to have to think about what could happen to [oneself] and [one’s] loved ones.”

Gal Hurvitz talks about the theater she created, in which young people in difficulty, whether Israeli, Israeli Arab, Palestinian, Ethiopian, etc., play Chekhov or Shakespeare, without having to ask themselves where they are from. are coming. On October 8, 2023, the day after the Hamas terrorist attack in Israel, “they managed to come, talk to each other and cry,” she said, before adding: “I force myself to stand up every morning and to have soft, nuanced eyes. The world lacks nuance: that bothers me a lot. »

She is sorry to be constantly reminded, in France (where she has been living for several months), of her Israeli identity: “They tell me “You, you, you, Israelis”; Now, I am not “you”. My grandparents escaped from Poland, and I was born in Israel and I love this country. It’s the politics of my country that I don’t like. Which is not to say, of course, that I do not have compassion for the children of Gaza: we can live with both. »

Give a shape

With rare honesty (or even non-existent in the age of social networks where everyone gives their opinion wrongly and often wrongly), Oksana Leuta says: “I would like to understand and give my opinion, but I don’t know what to say on Israel. » With the wisdom of a lioness, Ariane Mnouchkine then adds: “Actors are also not obliged to meet the demands of some who would like to see them portray cockfights or dog fights in the arena. Sometimes we need to be as wise as Oksana, to say nothing when we don’t know. We can also keep quiet, shut up from time to time, and try to understand. »

As an artist, however, she asks herself: “How can we give form to what happens in the morning if we haven’t had the afternoon and the night to give it form? Art is form. It is still done to civilize, and to be civilized is to understand that there is another. »

Giving a form or inventing one is also what Aurélie Charon does through her “Radio live”, which creates a dialogue, on stage, in a show nourished by sounds and images produced live by Amélie Bonnin, from people from here and elsewhere and from different generations. The next one will bring together Oksana Leuta, Gal Hurvitz, the Syrian filmmaker Hala Rajab and the Bosnian art historian and director Ines Tanovic, and will be hosted in Chaillot (Paris), from April 24 to 27, then in Lille, Rennes, Lyon , etc.

To all those who cannot attend and, when the noise of the world is too extreme, the show, which can be podcasted at will, is an oasis of humanity and light because, as Ariane Mnouchkine reminds us: “ If your candle isn’t burning, don’t come and blow mine out. »