When Shakespeare takes the lion’s share. This 2022 edition of Les Molières was marked by the unchallenged triumph of a version of the comedy As You Like It, which won four statuettes at the prestigious theater ceremony. An event which also called on the public to return to the halls, exhausted by two years of pandemic.
This 33rd edition was also overtaken by the MeToo wave at the theatre, with a rally attended by feminist activist Alice Coffin and actress Adèle Haenel in front of the Folies Bergère during the ceremony, at the call of a collective which denounces sexual and gender-based violence in the environment.
Inside the room, calls were made to move the lines. “You still don’t know what’s going on inside your theaters,” said actress Nathalie Mann, representing “Actrices et acteurs de France associés” on stage. She called for “naming a referent or a referent” for sexual and gender-based violence in theatrical institutions, as is the case on film sets.
Pauline Bureau, who won the Molière for living French-speaking author for her play on a women’s football team, recalled that “18% of public money goes to companies run by women” and called the new Minister of Culture, Rima Abdul-Malak, present in the room, to make it his hobbyhorse.
Humor, musical comedy and magical shows won the prize list for this ceremony, which coincided with the 400th anniversary of the birth of Molière, but also with a drop in attendance in theaters.
“It is not by standing in front of our screens waiting for meal delivery people that we will triumph over our anxieties… It is by laughing or crying, by sharing our emotions in a theater”, pleaded the president of this edition, the actress Isabelle Carré, at the start of the evening retransmitted on France 3. According to figures from the Association for the support of private theater cited by the newspaper Les Échos, attendance in the first quarter of 2022 is down shrinkage of 44% compared to 2019.
Despite the seriousness of the themes, including tributes to Ukraine, master of ceremonies and comedian Alex Vizorek tried to inject humor throughout the evening, telling the audience straight away: “I hope everyone got in, and it wasn’t the Stade de France,” referring to Saturday’s incidents.
Big named stars, such as Isabelle Adjani, Vanessa Paradis, Laetitia Casta or Pierre Arditi, left empty-handed from this ceremony, which had been organized without an audience in 2020 and then canceled last year because of the Covid.
It was the Shakespearian comedy As You Like It, in a version by Léna Bréban, which dominated this evening, with four statuettes: best private theater show, best private staging, best private theater actress (Barbara Schulz ), best actress in a supporting role (Ariane Mourier).
Another comedy, Berlin Berlin, about a couple during the Cold War who want to flee and go to the West, won the Molière for comedy and the best actor in private theater (Maxime d’Aboville). As for the musical Les Producteurs, in a staging by the gifted French theater artist Alexis Michalik, it won two Molières (best musical show and male revelation for Benoît Cauden).
The most coveted couple of directors of the moment, Christian Hecq and Valérie Lesort, won two statuettes (visual creation and staging for a public theater show) for Le Voyage de Gulliver, a show that enchanted young children. and large in January.
A tribute was also paid to Michel Bouquet, tutelary figure of French theater and cinema who died on April 13 at the age of 96, and an honorary Molière was awarded to a heavyweight on the stage, the actor Jacques Weber.
The complete winners of the 33rd Molières ceremony:
Molière du Théâtre public: Les gros patinent bien – cardboard cabaret by Pierre Guillois and Olivier Martin-Salvan, directed by Pierre Guillois and Olivier Martin-Salvan
Molière of the Private Theater: As You Like It by William Shakespeare, directed by Léna Bréban
Molière du Comédien in a Public Theater Show: Jacques Gamblin in Harvey by Mary Chase, directed by Laurent Pelly
Molière of the Comédienne in a public theater show: Clotilde Hesme in Stallone by Fabien Gorgeart, Clotilde Hesme and Pascal Sangla after Emmanuèle Bernheim, directed by Fabien Gorgeart
Molière du Comédien in a Private Theater Show: Maxime d’Aboville in Berlin Berlin by Patrick Haudecoeur and Gérald Sibleyras, directed by José Paul
Molière of the Comedian in a Private Theater Show: Barbara Schulz in As You Like It by William Shakespeare, directed by Léna Bréban
Molière of Female Revelation: Salomé Villiers in Le Montespan by Jean Teulé, directed by Étienne Launay
Molière of Male Revelation: Benoît Cauden in The Producers by Mel Brooks, directed by Alexis Michalik
Molière du Seul/Seule en scène: The Metamorphosis of the Storks with Marc Arnaud, by Marc Arnaud, directed by Benjamin Guillard
Molière of the Comedian in a Supporting Role: Ariane Mourier in As You Like It by William Shakespeare, directed by Léna Bréban
Molière du Comédien in a supporting role: Nicolas Lumbreras in The Race of the Giants by Mélody Mourey, directed by Mélody Mourey
Director’s Molière in a Public Theater Show: Christian Hecq and Valérie Lesort for Gulliver’s Journey after Jonathan Swift
Molière from Director in a Private Theater Performance: Léna Bréban for As You Like It by William Shakespeare
Molière of Visual and Sound Creation: Gulliver’s Journey after Jonathan Swift, directed by Christian Hecq and Valérie Lesort
Molière from The Musical Show: The Producers by Mel Brooks, directed by Alexis Michalik
Molière de la Comédie: Berlin Berlin by Patrick Haudecoeur and Gérald Sibleyras, directed by José Paul
Molière of Humor: Vincent Dedienne in A Gala Evening
Molière du Jeune public: I have too many friends by David Lescot, directed by David Lescot
Molière of the living French-speaking author: Pauline Bureau pour Féminines