Piece for three jugglers on a repertoire for string quartet

Imagine three figures in an enclosed space, it is night, it’s dark.
This is the setting, with no images and no sound…
Then suddenly, a noise, and there is light, severl figures, a flame, a ball.
They are the main characters.
Now each figure tries to find his or her place in the order of things, to inhabit the night : the balls besome a crowd, a herd, vermin that enter through the doors and windows.
It is a swarm, an anthill, maybe even a tribe.
Taken from their night, the silhouettes then appear. One face meets another. Life is organized to try to find the silence and the darkness once again.
The myriad mysteries and the light that endlessly shatter the continuous order of time.
Seated close by, surrounded by sounds echoing from all directions, the spectators gradually become accustomed to the weak light from the candles which lend a spirit of magic to all their perceptions.


“The figures are personified – they come to life.
Three characters are present, each with his own personality, disposition, and speed, but also his position related to the desired outcome.
Time passes at the rhythm of the movements and the spectators are in communion with them : things happen to them at the same time as to the protagonist.
NUIT is built  in a decisive, mechanistic rhythm, which strongly maintains a relationship of sympathy and proximity between the actors and the spectators.

The musical form of the show is not given in advance, it is built up little by little, in the time experienced by the characters, in their own bodily rhythms : the lives of the characters become the rhythm of the music, they produce it by controlling time.

The action is rarely constructed ; it most often emerges from unexpected events. When it is in fact constructed, it sets off effects that are also unexpected and new events emerge.
The characters are therefore constantly discovering new situations.

Magic produces marvellous effects that are unfathomable at first sight. The dramaturgy accompanies the characters in the same way it accompanies the viewer : by identification. The figures react in primary, simple way, as the viewer would naturally have reacted : the path is obvious, but the destination is not. The perpetual change of destination of the action is what sustains the desired dramatic tension.”


NUIT and young audiences

This notion, which for us is not limited to “young” audiences, includes all those who have not yet acquired a well-developed personal experience as a spectator. We feel that it is not up to the spectator to decode our show ; it is up to us to bring him or her to an understanding of our dramaturgy.

The coherence of the action is built piece by piece through the juxtaposition of simple elements (an action, a toss, a gesture). We distil the codes by repeating them as the plot progresses, thus arousing the viewer’s expectations with identification mechanisms and surprises created by unanticipated breaks in the repetitions/variations.

During our stage work, the bond with the young audience takes shape through new types of relationships that emerge from many simple, everyday elements placed in a space and for a certain duration. Juggling together can seem like an everyday thing.

These elements are not referenced, nor do they require prior knowledge to be perceived. Coherence takes shape little by little in the ear, the eyes, and the mind of the spectator, who is then invited to be the narrator of his or her own story.

A joint creation by Nicolas Mathis, Julien Clément et Rémi Darbois
Scenographic design and production : Olivier Filipucci
Technical director : Olivier Filipucci
Technical manager : François Dareys ou Gautier Devoucoux
With the magical collaboration of Yann Frisch
Digital development : ekito, under the direction of Benjamin Böhle-Roitelet
Musical settings : Denis Fargeton

Teaser - NUIT

Creation : Creation 2015

Duration : 45 minutes

Images - NUIT

© Ian Grandjean

Press review

  • The Collectif Petit Travers or the art of a blended universe

    NUIT is a sharp, short piece filled with magic and melancholy. Three jugglers cross paths, search for each other, dodge and challenge each other with balls […] like sleepless bodies in the grip of desire and longing.

    Stradda 25•02•2016
  • A luminous NUIT

    NUIT is not really a dark show and that is a lucky thing because everyone – young and old alike – will enjoy it. In NUIT, cinematographic dramaturgy comes naturally, so much so that we also seem to be watching a silent film from the interwar years. In this beautiful, quaintly outdated universe, fuelled by snippets of baroque music, the bodies whirl about the rhythm of objects. […] Although NUIT is a short format, the density of the subject matter arouses an authentic visual appetite from start to finish.

    LE TÉLÉGRAMME 25•01•2017
  • A Starry, Starry Night

    The Collectif Petit Travers strives to awaken the senses. The heightened sensitivity of the three founders/jugglers of the company rebounds today between the four walls on stage […] and it is an understatement to stay that poetry has come to the set.

    RUE DU THÉÂTRE 29•10•2015

Production : Collectif Petit Travers
Co-production and artistic residence hosts : CIRCa, National Circus Centre, Auch Gers Occitanie / Le Sirque, National Circus Arts Centre in Nexon, Limousin / Le Polaris, Regional Theatre Rhône-Alpes in Corbas
Artistic Residencies : Les Subsistances, International Creative Laboratory in Lyon / La Brèche, National Circus Arts Centre in Cherbourg Octeville / La Grainerie, Center for Circus Arts and Itinerance in Balma / Poly Sons in Saint-Affrique
Supported by : funding for circus and street arts from the General Directorate of Artistic Creation, Ministry of Culture and Communication / City of Villeurbanne / Adami / Fonds de soutien à la création artistique numérique (SCAN) Rhône-Alpes Regional Council / with the participation of DICRéAM, CNC / Bourse Processus Cirque de la SACD
Our thanks to Orbotix for Sphero and for their support on this project.