First Act: a direct and brutal camera

Inspired by the release conditions of host Jian Ghomeshi, accused of sexual assault in 2014, the play Disgrace is a direct, lightning, full face. We do not take a position. We expose the facts. Brutally.

On view until May 7 at Premier Acte, this creation by the company La Trâlée tells the story of a mother who agrees to take into her home, for the duration of the legal proceedings, her son, a star animator accused of sexual assault. The camera is intense and powerful.

Directed by Gabriel Cloutier Tremblay, Nadia Girard Eddahia’s text, sprinkled with silences, resonates in the small 80-seat hall.

The 85 minutes, without any length, of Disgrace begin with the arrival of Thomas Perron at his mother’s. A visibly broken man.

Marie-Ginette Guay and Gabriel Fournier in Disgrace.

Photo courtesy, David Mendoza Hélaine

Solidly interpreted by Marie-Ginette Guay, the mother is happy. She finds a son she has lost since her rise in the media landscape. For her, the reunion is almost happy.

Her son, accused of assaulting two women, was the victim, she says, of little bitches and jealous “cows”. She defends him. He can’t be guilty.

No white gloves

Played by Gabriel Fournier, “Tom-Tom” is a larger than life character. He sees himself as a victim. His lawyer prevents him from explaining himself in the media. Frustrated, he insists. He wants to give his version.

A third victim is added. The mother suddenly feels a hatred towards her son in her small village. It talks.

His lawyer, excellent Frédérique Bradet, believes he has found a flaw. The credibility of the victims, who would have been consenting, of which we hear excerpts of testimonies, will be attacked during the trial.

Marie-Ginette Guay and Gabriel Fournier in Disgrace.

Photo courtesy, David Mendoza Hélaine

Thomas’ balance, frustrated at having lost everything, is fragile. Impulsive, he explodes and demonstrates it, during a mock interview initiated by his lawyer.

A few days before the trial, the mother will realize, during an intense face-to-face encounter, the seriousness of her son’s problem. A point of no return.

The soundtrack, filled with sound effects, amplifies the feeling of tension. We find a very strange and interesting sequence, during a carefree dance sequence featuring the accused, his mother and the lawyer, to the sound of a hit distorted 70s disco.

There are no white gloves. We expose the facts. Directly and brutally. Disgrace spank hard. It’s well played, very well rendered and in tune with the times. The strongest proposal, so far, of the Premier Acte 2021-2022 season.

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