Marie Brassard, Jimmy

Review in Issue 16-3/4 | Autumn 2004

French-Canadian actor-director Marie Brassard’s production of Jimmy is a brilliantly distinct yet slightly unsettling portrayal of what happens to the characters of our dreams when we wake up; the world between action and imagination in our slumber-life. There is an edge of nightmare to this colourfully haunting piece implying that you do not dream your dreams – they dream you.

We meet Jimmy – a dreamt entity, although presented as a real, breathing, bleeding, feeling character. He is forced to deal with a multitude of complexities whenever his dream-vestibule (first an American general, and later an actress) wakes up and he is left in limbo. He must stay trapped wherever the dream stops – in an airplane toilet for weeks at a time, or in a desert of writhing dismembered soldiers.

Brassard has a remarkable capacity to slip between an array of characters, from the arch-browed, nose bleeding homosexual hairdresser, Jimmy; to an actress (whose persona is interwoven with the actress as a real person as well as played character); the actress’ dead mother; and Jimmy as a sweet yet slightly disturbed child. This is perhaps due to the use of a microphone that distorts her voice and, in a pre-supposed, brilliant technical rebuff, is used to reveal more about the nature of performance, performer and audience expectation to enhance the key issues of identity within the play. The message Brassard leaves us with is rather uniform for such an original play – that, ultimately, we can do nothing if we do not dream.

Presenting Artists
Presenting Venue
Date Seen
  1. Jun 2004

This article in the magazine

Issue 16-3/4
p. 26