Flagrant déni

Théâtre de la Huchette

Until December 7, 2022

French

Location

Théâtre de la Huchette
23 Rue de la Huchette, 75005 Paris
Capacity 85 seats

Duration

1 hr 10 min

No intermission


Details

Comedy

For the whole family

French with no surtitles


Highlights

Flagrant déni is a theatrical collection and embodied version of passages by Guy de Maupassant. Although not originally written for the theatre, these short stories by the famous French author are magnificently written in a particular way through dialogue and descriptive scenes which makes them a perfect fit for the stage. Maupassant is a master in the art of describing the precarious life of Norman peasants, provincial notables and petty Parisian bourgeois. Striking sounds, succulent smells, stimulating scenes... Everything is present in Flagrant déni to breathe life into Maupassant’s characters through Catherine Benhamou’s minimalist staging for one man.

 

 

Story

Fragrant déni follows the fate of a judge, from his beginnings in Normandy to his consecration in Versailles. This theatrical masterpiece tells us a series of different tragicomic court cases through the profound views of the literary genius, Maupassant, writer and journalist. French actor Alain Payen perfectly embodies each and every character and gives them depth through sharp grimaces, complex attitudes, and heavy intonations. The lives of several Norman characters, from peasants tried for excessive drinking to church officers searched for filthy relationships, will be tried and tested by the judge. Will the confessions of their funny and pathetic crimes set the accused free?

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Théâtre de la Huchette

23 Rue de la Huchette, 75005 Paris

A creative rebirth

Ending four years of Nazi occupation in 1945; during which censorship, curfews, and alerts practically suffocated all theatrical creation; the liberation paved the way for a creative explosion. Small theatres such as the Vieux Colombier, the Noctambules, Theatre Babylone and more began opening all over Paris, particularly in the Latin Quarter. That's when a fated pair cross paths, Marcel Pinard, the aspiring actor working odd jobs, and Georges Vitaly, the exiled Russian playwright. Pinard convinces his girlfriend at the time to rent out the legendary location at 23 rue Huchette so the two can create a theatre together, Vitaly the brains and playwright in the endeavor, with Pinard providing the location and his acting talent. The pair proves successful, and through the early 1950s the stage welcomed some of France's upcoming actors, including Jacqueline Maillan, Claude Gensac, Monique Delaroche, Pierre Mondy, François Chaumette, Jacques Fabbri, Michel Roux, and more.

 

A world-record theatre

Eventually Vitaly wants to move his successful plays on to a bigger venue, and he heads to the Théâtre La Bruyère. Under the sole direction of Marcel Pinard, the Théâtre Huchette takes a new direction featuring contemporary theatre. Marcel permanently unites his two leading new shows, Cantatrice Chauve and La Leçon, to create a record-breaking combo. To this day, these two performances remain the longest-running shows continually playing in the same venue, a world record!

 

An iconic venue

In 1975, Marcel suffers a heart attack in the theatre's tiny ticket booth. Following his death, the troupe battles to save the venue from being shut down and transformed into a restaurant for tourists. They proved successful, and this quaint theatre in the very heart of historic Paris continues to be a place of creative celebration. The headlining shows have become an institution in their own right, and welcome a full house an entire half-century later. This one of the only venues in the world welcoming generation after generation of French and international audiences to see the unchanged pair of shows, which were rather avant-garde at the time of their arrival on stage, and are now beloved classics! A quaint playhouse born in the post-war wave of creativity, the Théâtre Huchette is Parisian must-see, an entirely unexpected find in the very heart of the Latin Quarter.

Such an iconic and historic location though is not without a rumoured past! Tales have been told that prior to the Vitaly-Marcel takeover, the location of the theatre was used by monks of the nearby Saint Séverin church to bury treasure, and a witch is also rumoured to have used the cellar as a meeting point to preach an emerging new religion!

 

Fast facts

Capacity: 85

Handicap Accessible? Yes

Air conditioning? No

FAQ

How do I get to the Théâtre de la Huchette?

The stations near Théâtre de la Huchette are Saint-Michel (4) and Cluny-la-Sorbonne (10). You can also come by RER C or B, to the Saint Michel Notre Dame stop, or by bus, taking lines 21, 27, 38, 85 or 96 to the Saint Michel stop. Our hotline can be reached in case of difficulty finding the theatre Monday to Friday from 10 am to 7 pm Paris time. For details, we invite you to consult the map above.

What do I do when I get to the theatre?

We invite you to arrive 15 minutes before the beginning of the show and present your voucher at the front desk. The theatre's English-speaking staff members will guide you to your seats.

Is a program of the show included in my ticket?

Flagrant déni tickets do not include a program.

How long do the shows last?

Flagrant déni lasts for 1 hour 10 minutes without intermission.

Is this show for travellers or French people?

Flagrant déni is entertaining for both French and international tourists that have a fluent level of French as it will not be translated.

Is it mandatory to tip the ushers?

Tips are not mandatory in Parisian theaters. However, you will usually expect a small tip of between € 2 and € 5, which you can give them when they've shown you to your seat. Fun fact: the French word for "tip" is "pourboire" which literally translates to "to have a drink"