Why do old people, who have nothing to do, cross at a red light? Play about growing old…

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“Old age lends itself to the theater of the body. Because in life, you are only aware of your body when it hurts,” says the In Itinere collective. And to continue: “To be old is therefore not to be able to forget it. It is a “physical” state par excellence. The body dictates its rules and takes power, the intellect is in concentration in the service of its movements. And to add: “we all get old and are always someone’s old man. What do we do in front of the first signs of the body saying that it is tired? What physical finding do we implement to continue dancing? What will make us laugh and hold on tomorrow? Because the old that we will be, they are already in us”. “Because we didn’t want to cut corners and we can’t judge someone’s quality of life, so we had to go as close as possible. Going against the tendency to hide death, to hide those very old people who remind us too much of it. So we decided to create this show in a retirement home.” “The times of residence in EHPAD were interspersed with workshops of movements and creation of masks with the residents. A way to exchange between generations. Because our experience has shown us that most residents don’t want to talk about old age.” “But by talking about their youth and those they knew, they talk about their daily lives, their intimacy and what they miss. Be as close as possible, in order to be able to speak of individuals and not of social groups. Because as Bourdieu points out “age is a socially manipulated and manipulable biological datum”, that “the divisions between ages are arbitrary” and that “the border between youth and old age is in all societies an issue of struggle” . “Even if the themes are serious, death is for us a way of talking about life. Where aging and dying are individual matters, surviving it is a collective action.” The story of this play where the actors play masked? One morning, in a retirement home, a little old man dies. Another replaces it. Routine. During this time, the card games continue, the sports exercises and the memory workshops too. But in this retirement home, a little old woman resists… She doesn’t want to live that life anymore! She doesn’t want to play anymore. But the staff and her co-religionists do everything to make her hang on… A show between burlesque and drama that questions old age and the end of life. A piece that received in 2021 an Audience Award at the Mimos Festival in Périgueux.

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