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King Lear

text William Shakespeare
direction and set design Sylvain Levitte
associate director Clara Noël
lighting design Vincent Gabriel
sound design Clémentine Bergel
company stage manager Luca Kempenar
assistant Flore Babled
singing coach Cécile Leterme


Johann Cuny and Bertrand Uscalt (cast 1)

Pierre Giafferi and Bertrand Usclat (cast 2)

Jean-Christophe Legendre and Loïc Renard (cast 3)

Running time 1 hour 30

Audience: 15 years +

Download production brochure


support Odéon-Théâtre de l’Europe, Compagnie des Petits Champs (Clément Hervieu-Léger and Daniel San Pedro)

Show created in 2015 at Domaine d’Harcourt and Hall de la Chanson – La Villette

Two teenage brothers are locked in an old barn and begin inventing the very old tragedy of King Lear, before the audience’s eyes.

They change characters at breakneck speed, until the space itself begins to play, coming to life without the brothers realizing...

The relationship in King Lear between Edgar, a legitimate son, and Edmund, a bastard, is the central focus on the show, around which all other characters and events revolve. Here, in this story, generally considered a subplot alongside that of King Lear and his three daughters, the brothers Edmund and Edgar form the main story from which all the situations imagined by Shakespeare stem.

It is a story of intergenerational conflict: the generation fighting oblivion, and the generation fighting to exist. Heir Edgar wants to save his father and the status quo, while bastard Edmund has to destroy them to exist: he represents the potential revolutionary, a constant in any situation of domination. The brothers are the two sides of our mixed feelings when we fight to save a reassuring past while wishing to escape to live our own lives. Must one kill the father, or save him?

Johann Cuny ©Matthieu Touzé

Bertrand Usclat and Johann Cuny ©Matthieu Touzé

"'Tis the time's plague when madmen lead the blind."


"Nothing : nothing can be made out of nothing."

From 2013 to 2015, we rehearsed, presented public workshop and played this loose adaptation of Shakespeare’s King Lear with five actors: Johann Cunny, Bertrand Usclat, Pierre Giafferi, Jean-Christophe Legendre and Loïc Renard. In turn, these five actors played the more than 20 characters written by Shakespeare between 1603 and 1606. We would like to thank them enormously.

We would also particularly like to thank the partners who supported us throughout this great adventure: JTN, Odéon-Théâtre de l’Europe, Théâtre de Verre and Hall de la Chanson, and particularly Domaine d’Harcourt and L’Étable in Beaumontel (Compagnie des Petits Champs).

Thank you to Daniel San Pedro, Judith Hervieu, Clément Hervieu-Léger and Martin Roch.

We plan to resume this production during performances of our Shakespearean triptych : the tragedy (King Lear), the comedy (Twelfth Night) and Winter's Tale in 2022-2023.

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