Comédie-Française  

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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.
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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.

The Comédie-Française or Théâtre Français is the only state theater in France. It is also one of the few to have its own troupe of actors. It is located in the Ier arrondissement of Paris.

The theatre has also been known as the Théâtre Nautique and as the Théâtre de la République. The best-known playwright associated with the Comédie-Française is Molière. He was considered the patron of French actors; however, he died seven years before the birth of La Maison de Molière, as the Comédie-Française is often styled.

Contents

History

The Comédie-Française was founded by a decree of Louis XIV on 24 August 1680 to merge the only two Parisian acting troupes of the time, the troupe of the hôtel Guénégaud and that of the hôtel de Bourgogne. The repertoire at that time consisted of the collection of theatrical works by Molière and Jean Racine, along with a few works by Pierre Corneille, Paul Scarron and Jean Rotrou. Its first building was housed at the Hôtel de Guénégaud.

On 3 September 1793, during the French Revolution, the Comédie-Française was closed by order of the Committee of Public Safety for putting on the allegedly seditious play Pamela, and the actors were imprisoned. On 31 May 1799, the new government made the salle Richelieu available and allowed the actors to reconstitute the troupe.

The Comédie-Française today has a repertoire of 3,000 works and three theaters in Paris (salle Richelieu, next to the Palais Royal; théâtre du Vieux-Colombier; Studio-Théâtre).

Theater buildings

The Comédie-Française has had several homes since its inception. In 1689, it was established across from the café Procope. The Odéon was designed by architects Marie-Joseph Peyre (1770–1843) and Charles De Wailly (1730–1798). Since 1799, the Comédie-Française has been housed in the salle Richelieu (architect Victor Louis) at 2, rue de Richelieu. This theater was enlarged and modified in the 1800s, then rebuilt in 1900 after a severe fire.

List of administrators of the Comédie-Française

The chief administrator of the Comédie-Française has been given the title administrateur général since Simonis' term of 1850. Before that, a variety of titles were given. The administrators are listed below in chronological order.

  • Jean-François-René Mahérault (7 February 1799 – 3 February 1813)
  • Nicolas Bernard (3 February 1813 – 11 June 1814 and 24 March 1815 – 28 June 1815)
  • François Cheron (1821 – 9 July 1825)
  • Sarah Bernhardt
  • Baron Isidore Justin Séverin Taylor (9 July 1825 until the July revolution and 5 April 1831 – 17 October 1838)
  • Hyacinthe Albertin (interim administrator during Taylor's travels)
  • Édouard-Joseph-Ennemond Mazères (24 September 1830 – 6 April 1831)
  • Armand-François Jouslin de La Salle (8 June 1833 – 31 July 1837)
  • Hygin-Auguste, called Edmond Cave (28 January 1837 – 17 October 1838)
  • Alexandre-Louis Poulet, called Vedel (managing director, 1 March 1837 – 8 March 1840)
  • François Buloz (17 October 1838 – 2 March 1848)
  • Joseph-Philippe Simon, called Lockroy (2 March – 11 October 1848)
  • Eugène Bazenerye (20 October 1848 – 16 November 1849)
  • Sébastien Edmond, called Sevestre (producer with administrative rôle, 13 October 1848 – 15 November 1849)
  • Arsène Housset, called Houssaye (15 November 1849 – 29 January 1856)
  • Adolphe Dominique Florent Joseph Simonis, named Empis (30 January 1856 – 21 October 1859)
  • Édouard Thierry (2 October 1859 – 8 July 1871)
  • Émile-César-Victor Perrin (8 July 1871 – 8 October 1885)
  • Albert Kaempfen (provisional post, 30 May – 20 October 1885)
  • Jules Claretie (20 October 1885 – 23 December 1913)
  • Albert Carré (1 January 1914 – 30 November 1915)
  • Émile Fabre (2 December 1915 – 15 October 1936)
  • Édouard Bourdet (15 October 1936 – 27 December 1940)
  • Jacques Copeau (interim post 15 May – 27 December 1940 and full post 27 December 1940 – 7 January 1941)
  • Léon Lamblin (government commissioner 13 January – 7 March 1941)
  • Jean-Louis Vaudoyer (4 March 1941 – 23 March 1944)
  • André Brunot (24 March – 28 July 1944)
  • Jean Sarment (July 1944 did not take office)
  • Pierre Dux (1 September 1944 – 1 July 1945)
  • Joseph Denis called Denis D'Ines (1 July to start of October 1945)
  • André Obey (provisional post October 1945 – 6 April 1946 and full post 6 April 1946 – 5 February 1947)
  • Pierre-Aimé Touchard (5 April 1947 – 5 April 1953)
  • Pierre Descaves (5 April 1953 – 5 April 1959)
  • Claude de Boisanger (20 April 1959 – 30 January 1960 recalled then reinstated 27 November 1962 – 31 January 1960)
  • Maurice Escande (1 June 1960 – 31 July 1970)
  • Pierre Dux (1 August 1970 – 31 July 1979)
  • Jacques Toja (1 September 1979 – 31 July 1983)
  • Jean-Pierre Vincent (1 August 1983 – 31 July 1986)
  • Jean Le Poulain (1 August 1986 – March 1988)
  • Claude Winter (interim post 1 April – 15 June 1988)
  • Antoine Vitez (15 June 1988 – 30 April 1990)
  • Catherine Samie (interim post 1 May – 5 July 1990)
  • Jacques Lassalle (15 July 1990 – 5 August 1993)
  • Jean-Pierre Miquel (5 August 1993 – 3 August 2001)
  • Marcel Bozonnet (4 August 2001 – 3 August 2006)
  • Muriel Mayette (4 August 2006 –

See also




Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Comédie-Française" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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