France: Nicole Rieu’s tribute to Women

by Yann Messina 169 views

Nicole Rieu, the 1975 French Eurovision representative with 4th-placed entry Et bonjour à toi l’artiste (see here), will be back on the stage of the Théâtre de l’Essaïon in Paris with a brand new show, Olympe, réveille-nous, based on the writings of 18th century French feminist Olympe de Gouges.

Olympe de Gouges was a French playwright and political activist whose feminist and abolitionist writings reached a large audience. She began her career as a playwright in the early 1780s. She became an outspoken advocate for improving the condition of slaves in the colonies as of 1788. At the same time, she began writing political pamphlets. Today she is perhaps best known as an early feminist who demanded that French women be given the same rights as French men. In her Declaration of the Rights of Woman and the Female Citizen (1791), she challenged the practice of male authority and the notion of male–female inequality. She was executed in 1793 by guillotine for attacking the regime of the Revolutionary government.

This is not the first time Nicole Rieu shows an interest for Olympe de Gouges. Being fascinated by her courage and her dedication, the singer already echoed her humanist ideas and her modernity in the album Femmes in 2010. With Olymperéveille-nous, the concept is to put to music the writings of the 18th century activist. For the show, Nicole Rieu teamed up with comedian Marie-Christine Descouard who will read parts of the texts of Olympe de Gouges. Nicole Rieu will be in charge of the music and the singing parts of the show which will be given on 23, 24 and 25 January on the stage of the Théâtre de l’Essaïon in Paris. Hereafter is a video of the rehearsals of the show.

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