Buffalo State will host the French play La Chute, based on Albert Camus’s 1956 philosophical novel, on Thursday, October 17, at 6:30 p.m. in the Savage Theater and Communication Building’s Flexible Theatre.
The professional theater company Compagnie Caravague of Paris will present the play, which focuses on a lawyer seeking an “impossible redemption,” in French with English subtitles.
Alliance Française de Buffalo, a cultural organization that encourages and furthers the knowledge of French-speaking cultures and language in Western New York, is sponsoring La Chute in concert with three Buffalo State academic departments—Modern and Classical Languages, Philosophy, and Theater.
“Since January, when we moved our Alliance Française de Buffalo language classes from our previous location to Buffalo State, we have been fortunate to partner with the diverse interest and talents at this campus,” said Paula Hinz, president emeritus of Alliance Française de Buffalo. “The play has linked theater, philosophy, and world languages in order to provide a quality evening for the Buffalo State community and Western New Yorkers.”
Paris actor André Nerman, who plays disaffected lawyer Jean-Baptiste Clamence, adapted Camus’s novel, published in English as The Fall. Also performing will be the American French dancer Nicola Ayoub, who will embody several characters that form the play. Francis Courtot wrote the music.
The Buffalo staging of La Chute is part of Compagnie Caravague’s fall 2019 tour, which also includes St. Louis, Missouri; Wichita, Kansas; San Diego, California; and Toronto, Ontario.
Each of the three Buffalo State departments is interacting with the performance in some way.
The Theater Department is providing props and handling the technology and front of house duties during the performance. In addition, the play’s actors are offering a master class for Buffalo State students from 12:15 to 1:30 p.m. the day of the performance.
French students will attend as part of their required exploration of the language and culture beyond the classroom called “autonomous language learning,” said Mark Warford, chair of the Modern and Classical Languages Department and associate professor of Spanish.
And students enrolled in the courses Honors 101 and the Philosophy of Religion with Kimberly Blessing, professor of philosophy, have read the play and will attend the event.
“I’ll also be offering extra credit for other students,” Blessing said. “This is a great opportunity for students to interact with the work of Camus in a fresh way.”
Blessing will give a short talk before the play to provide some context and a brief summary of the story line. The play will begin at 7:00 p.m.
Advance sale tickets are $10 for high school and college students, $20 for AFB members, and $25 for nonmembers. Call (716) 688-4171 or order online.
About Albert Camus
Born in 1913, Camus frequently explored themes of the absurdity of the human condition in his novels, plays, essays, and philosophical writings. A native of Mondovi, Algeria, he eventually moved to France, where he established himself as one of the country’s most influential intellectuals. He wrote such famous works as The Stranger (1942) and The Plague (1947). Three years after winning the 1957 Nobel Prize in Literature, he was killed in an automobile accident in Villeblevin, France, at age 46.
About Alliance Française de Buffalo’s French Language School
Offers French conversational classes and workshops for children and adults year-round, evenings and weekends, at Buffalo State. From beginner to advanced, all classes and workshops are taught by experienced native or near native French speakers. Each student is screened in advance and placed in a level that fits his or her speaking and listening abilities. For more information, contact firstname.lastname@example.org or (716) 688-4171.
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