(Lebanon, Ontario, Québec)
Je me souviens is a production created for the FMA’s 10th anniversary. Rhythms, melodies, and dances derived from an authentic, joyous, and resilient Quebec meet with virtuosity, simplicity, and beauty the traditions of a heroic and pure Mount Lebanon. The creative minds behind this work invite us to join a grand celebration, taking place in the Square of a fictitious Village in the land of cedars or lilies, the epicenter of an everyday life filled with youth and enthusiasm. The complicity of the two memories, musical and choreographic, give life back to a fictional and awe-inspiring vision of these distant, yet still present, lands, which become “too good to be true”.
This oeuvre crosses cultures and eras, going from millenary music, orally transmitted from generation to generation, to cleverly written modern compositions, from Mawal to Quebecer traditional singing, Jig to middle eastern Dabké. Grouping the most creative composers, musicians, and artists, the show provides a platform where diverse aesthetics meet, through a vocabulary sustained by a marriage of styles. Inspired from as much tensions as memories’ intimacies, the artists aspire to create a work that bridges the gap between two worlds through art.
Je me souviens offers the audience a unique experience, involving the marriage of the two folklores’ vocabularies, an attempt to extract “universal traditional forms”, push back the frontiers of fixed identities, and recompose highly rich authentic expressions often crystallized in archaic styles. Common themes (birth, marriage, love, mourning, war, etc.) feed the musical and choreographic narrative in a spontaneous encounter between two memories that familiarize with each other at festive times. Je me souviens, one step forward into two memories!