News Nuit Américaine 2004 – 2005
Lambert Wilson presents “Nuit AmÈricaine” – American Nights, a new show, a “concert”, as he likes to underline, directed and arranged by RÈgis Huby, where he is on stage with musicians who are well experienced in the overall range of music, classical, contemporary or improvised, and two singers, Maria Laura Baccarini who’s just played brilliantly Roxie Hart in the Italian edition of Chicago-the musical, and StÈphy Haik, a young jazz singer who devides her time between Paris and New York.
This concert draws a line between XXth Century American classical music, that of Ned Rorem, Aaron Copland, Charles Ives, Samuel Barber, Kurt Weill (who got really close to musical comedy during his American period), Leonard Bernstein and George Gershwin, and musicals, those of Cole Porter, Rodgers & Hart and John Kander.
To Lambert Wilson, the sharing of music is of great importance, as it also is the interaction between musicians and singers, who are bound by the same “pulsation“- he states. I love being on stage with musicians. I grew up with music. I loved singing in choirs, for the sense of “togetherness” it gave me. When I was a child, my father gathered at home musicians together to rehearse and elaborate. Singing to me is not a different feeling from that of acting. Working on a lyric melody is similar to the work you do when acting. You use the poetry of words and music as actors use their text.
Lambert Wilson played Stephen Sondheim’s “A Little Night Music” in London in 1996. I’ve been on stage for nine months with wonderful, legendary actors, such as Judy Dench. It was a great training and formative experience to me. English professionalism pushes you to your furthest limits, exactly as you do with athletes, and strengthens your technique.
Lambert Wilson is the more and the more attracted by those songs which have to be sang by actors. In his 1991 show and later in “Demons et Merveilles”(1997) he had already chosen to take distance from classical musics written especially for baritones. I wished to express myself as an actor through singing. Mozart’s music somehow anguished me, while those songs composed for actors, songs belonging to musical comedies or to French music (“Demons et Merveilles”), allow me to join music, singing and acting.
Lambert Wilson states: The more I come to know certain Amaerican music, the more I feel attracted by those authors. Bernstein is the case. He remains faithful to the tradition of musical commedy, melting together also jazz and popular music. That’s why in the concert there are songs taken from “On the Town”, “Wonderful town” or “Candide”, less known to French audience than West Side Story. Ned Rorem is a wonderful melodist, singing his musical gems is a real pleasure. As it is “My Funny Valentine”, from “Babes in Arms”, by Rodgers & Hart, a standard of its own.
Nuit Américaine is a complex adventure that’s been prepared for a long, long time, as the music has been chosen among hundreds of songs, through hours and hours of listenings together with Régis Huby. Melting together musical comedy , that in his opinion is not ” a genre of music being apart from all the rest”, Lambert Wilson succeeds in letting some barriers fall that are too often established in music.