The Linguist

The Linguist 53,1

The Linguist is a languages magazine for professional linguists, translators, interpreters, language professionals, language teachers, trainers, students and academics with articles on translation, interpreting, business, government, technology

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• The Institut Français offers an eclectic programme of film viewings via its Ciné Lumière, plus music, theatre, festivals and talks. • Essentially the Institut Français's Edinburgh branch, offering a similar film programme as well as talks, tastings and other events. • Billing itself as 'The essential guide for everything French in London', this site provides listings of Francophone events, searchable by genre. • Local events put on by clubs supported by the Alliance Française in 34 UK towns and cities, from Basildon to Wolverhampton. • and Listings sites for all things French in the UK capital. Vol/53 No/1 2014 FEBRUARY/MARCH The Linguist 11 FEATURES of the French community in London, and we support each other in the artistic realisation of these projects. Putting a play together takes about 130 hours of rehearsals, and the same again for production and marketing. From the moment we start a new play, the process takes about six months. Firstly, we have to choose a play. This is not an easy task because it has to please our directing team and we have a very democratic process. We usually go to Paris, where there are some great theatre bookshops. One of the most famous, Le Coupe Papier, is on Rue de L'Odéon, near the European Theatre in Paris. The staff guide us through the new plays on the French scene. Our last play, Venise sous la neige, immediately stood out. I saw a production in Paris and met the writer, Gilles Dyrek, who granted us the rights to perform it in London. We then started the casting. During rehearsals, we worked on the production aspects: booking the theatre, developing advertising, speaking to the media, etc. This year, our Director, Caroline Lena-Olssen, was assisted by a Stage Manager who coordinated and sourced the props, costumes and other items. Our projects are usually linked to French culture. Artistic quality is essential but there are some great French playwrights at the moment, with a unique humour and style. Our audience has been very loyal and supportive. They know what to expect and we can't afford to disappoint them. Sourcing talent Many French people come to London to taste the vibrancy of the British capital. From the West End to the fringe, theatre is the perfect demonstration of the creativity that exists in the city. Because of this, there are a lot of French actors in London, and our company is able to unite these artists and offer them an organised space in which to work. We find artists mainly by networking with French organisations and artistic groups. We also use national resources such as UK casting websites, where a lot of French and French- British artists post their CVs. People also contact us through our website with projects and ideas. Most of the people involved with Tamise en Scène speak French, but they are not necessarily French. Last year, our Artistic Director was Elisa Lombardi, who is from Italy but speaks French fluently. Our Light Designer is French-English. The connection between us is the French language. Spreading the word To inform the French community about our performances and activities, we leverage French community organisations: media, local French magazines, the Fédération des Associations Françaises de Grande Bretagne, alumni clubs from French universities, and French societies in British universities. We also have a strong presence on social media and we are connected to many French groups on Facebook and Twitter. Students of French often come to watch our plays. We tend to put on contemporary plays, so the level is quite accessible. It is an entertaining way to keep up with the French language, and it is a nice way to meet people from the French community, as we invite our audience to meet at a local pub after the show. As artists, we are happy to share our experiences. The workshops came last. We started to receive a number of requests for drama classes, so we decided to put on a class. Such was the demand that there was a long waiting list and we now have two classes with a third one planned. The workshops are designed for adults who want to discover and learn drama techniques. In 2012-2013, we led one beginners' workshop and one advanced. The latter performed Les pas perdus at the Etcetera Theatre in Camden. We are now thinking about a project for people learning French. Theatre is a great way to lose your inhibitions and get over the fear of expressing yourself in another language. Visit for more information or to subscribe to their newsletter, or 'like' their Facebook page to receive regular updates. Interview by Miranda Moore. FRENCH CULTURE IN THE UK CLASS ACT Scenes from 'Venise sous la neige', performed by Tamise en Scène in June and November last year, with Léonore in green dress

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