V e r t i g e s

I have dreams, it’s nonsense. I see myself in the pot. I say to myself, "What am I doing here ...?" I have to get out, I have nothing to do here, but I cannot get out, I look around myself and I see lots of vegetables, pieces of meat floating around me in the boiling water. I say to myself: "I'm cooking but I feel nothing", at the same time it's comfortable, I feel comfortable with vegetables.


Haunted houses aren’t always in Scotland, topped with creaky weathervanes blowing in the wild wind, at the edge of a black loch full of strange and unknown monsters! They are everywhere, maybe right next to us. Nadir goes around his haunted house, its history, its fears, its complexes, its ghosts and fantasies, close to his forties. Following his divorce, he decided to get closer to his family to find a bit of peace. Many things have changed around him, the neighbourhood has become impoverished, some have become radicalised, the population has changed. He finds himself engulfed in a parallel world, a fantasy world, with a family left to itself and a father on the verge of death. This dreamlike dive takes us on a journey through a reality that is nevertheless the daily life of these families of foreign origin, families who became French for long-forgotten reasons.

The author and director, Nasser Djemaï, associate artist at the MC2 Grenoble, penned the third instalment of a saga about identity-building. Through this funny and cruel tale, he invites us to reconcile with complexity, to dive into the life of this family orphaned by his own history. This family does not want to explain anything to us. It just wants to continue on this quest for meaning, this quest for oneself, in an ever-changing world. For them, it is now about questioning their heritage, perhaps to reinvent a new era, a new world, and without a doubt a new religion? 


Text and staging Nasser Djemaï | Playwritting Natacha Diet | With Fatima Aibout, the mother | Clémence Azincourt, Mina | Zakariya Gouram, Nadir | Martine Harmel, the neighbor | Issam Rachyq-Ahrad, Hakim | Lounès Tazaïrt, the father | Stage assistant Benjamin Moreau | Lighting design Renaud Lagier | Sound design Frédéric Minière | Video design Claire Roygnan | Staging Alice Duchange | Costume designer Benjamin Moreau | Stage manager Lellia Chimento | Lighting director Aby Mathieu | Sound and video director Nicolas Perreau | Stagehand Djivan Velon | Set (building) atelier MC2: Grenoble | Costumes (dressmaking) atelier MC2: Grenoble 

Production Compagnie Nasser Djemaï
Coproduction MC2: Grenoble
Théâtre des Quartiers d’Ivry, Centre Dramatique National du Val-de-Marne
le Grand T, théâtre de Loire-Atlantique
le Granit, Scène nationale de Belfort
Maison des Arts du Léman, Thonon
Théâtre Château Rouge, Annemasse
Théâtre du Vellein, Villefontaine
Théâtre de la Croix-Rousse, Lyon
Le Théâtre de Rungis
Les Salins, Scène nationale de Martigues

With the support of :
la Chartreuse-CNES, Villeneuve-lez-Avignon
la Maison des métallos, Paris
le Théâtre 13, Paris
Théâtre du Chevalet, Noyon
le Groupe des 20 théâtres en Île-de-France
le Groupe des 20 Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes
les Théâtrales Charles Dullin
Théâtre Gérard Philipe de Champigny-sur-Marne
la Caisse des Dépôts

This text won the Commission nationale d'Aide
à la création de textes dramatiques
(the National Commission of Assistance for the
creation of dramatic texts) - ARTCENA. |
The production and distribution of this play was
supported by the SACD Théâtre Fund |
Actes Sud-Papiers Publisher

The Nasser Djemaï troupe has been commissioned
by the Ministry of Culture and Communication - D.R.A.C.
Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes and subsidised by the
Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes Region, the Departmental
Council of Isère and the City of Grenoble.

Creation from the 11th to 28th of January 2017 – MC2: Grenoble 


Nasser Djemaï has a great quality: he demonstrates nothing, he showcases what is happening today in what he calls "urban cysts". His play hits right at the heart of the problem: the personal, social and national identity. Not as we talk about it, but as we live it in everyday life, when we are marked by exclusion and shame. It could be heavy, but it's funny, just, sensitive. LE MONDE

In this rather conventional family who faces a series of obstacles, Nadir is the cat amongst the pigeons. Rather than getting lost in nostalgia for what was, he climbs the tree of the present; upending taboos and the unspoken without contempt or condescension, with the delicacy that befits the staging and the writing of Nasser Djemai, where all is only grace and love. MARIANNE

The beauty of this show comes from the quality of the acting and the way the author transcends all the proclaimed statements and positions. POLITIS

This play is a political gesture that has impact. A gesture that helps to include other faces and other journeys in the imagination of our national story. LA TERRASSE

The characters are interpreted with so much conviction - by Zakaryia Gouram, Lounes Tazairt, Fatima Aibour, Clemence Azincourt, Issam Rachyq-Ahrad and Martine Harmel - that they seem to have been made to measure. There is an upsetting moment for each of them where they let their inner thoughts be heard. In this show about a family, writes Djemai, orphaned by its own history, the author does not just dig into what is real, he also gives it a fable-esque quality. Beautiful work. ALLEGRO THÉÂTRE