My Theatre: Philippe Gaulier

Feature in Issue 11-1 | Spring 1999

What did you see the first time you went to the theatre?

I saw Molière at the Comedie Française when I was at school. Every Tuesday the theatre put on performances for schools. Perhaps that’s what put me off conventional theatre.

What is the most recent performance you’ve seen?

The most recent beautiful show was The Right Size’s Stop Calling Me Vernon.

What single performance has inspired you the most?

No single performance, except perhaps Roger Blin’s production of Beckett’s Waiting for Godot. Early Strehler I loved and the productions of Jean Vilar.

Which actor, alive or dead, makes you laugh the most?

Galabru.

Who is your favourite playwright?

Shakespeare.

When was the last time you walked out of a theatre before the end of a show?

Bob Wilson’s recent show in London. Michel Piccoli is a wonderful actor but I walked out because of the horrible Duras text.

When was the last time you cried at the theatre?

Watching an improvisation in the Melodrama course at my school last week.

Who is your favourite actor?

Gerard Philipe.

If you could chose to meet any theatre practitioner, alive or dead, who would it be?

Olivier.

Which contemporary theatre director’s work do you most admire?

Well, he’s not contemporary, but Roger Blin.

What does ‘physical theatre’ mean to you?

Boring theatre.

What would you be if you didn’t work in the theatre?

A photographer.

If you could send one message to Chris Smith, what would it be?

Give me a building for my school!

Philippe Gaulier’s theatre school has been based in London since 1991. The school, which was established in 1980 in Paris, will be 20 years old next year. Philippe Gaulier’s most recent production, La Compote de…, was performed at the 1998 Festival de Otoño in Madrid.

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Issue 11-1
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