The Song of Songs

Programming – To stage

If I had to talk about love, I wouldn’t know what to say.

Then I would let those who have spoken of love so beautifully speak.

And the most beautiful love text – a spoken text – that I have ever read is the Song of Songs.

What is splendid is the absolutely human dimension of love: its absolute purity, its strength, its fears – the fear of not being beautiful enough – its desire to offer everything to the beloved – its carnal dimension too: but yes, one loves by passing one’s hand on the beloved cheek, by getting drunk with a scent, by quivering at the sound of the overly beloved voice.

Honestly: how can we say more beautiful than that?

That which teaches love even to those who haven’t met it :

CHAPTER 5

Lover

I have come into my garden, my sister, my bride.
I have gathered my myrrh with my spice;
I have eaten my honeycomb with my honey;
I have drunk my wine with my milk.

Friends

Eat, friends!
Drink, yes, drink abundantly, beloved.

Beloved

I was asleep, but my heart was awake.
It is the voice of my beloved who knocks:
“Open to me, my sister, my love, my dove, my undefiled;
for my head is filled with dew,
and my hair with the dampness of the night.”
I have taken off my robe. Indeed, must I put it on?
I have washed my feet. Indeed, must I soil them?
My beloved thrust his hand in through the latch opening.
My heart pounded for him.
I rose up to open for my beloved.
My hands dripped with myrrh,
my fingers with liquid myrrh,
on the handles of the lock.
I opened to my beloved (…)

When she opened the door, he was gone.
She left her house, she went out into the world looking for him. She ran into the men, they beat her, they tore her veil. If she knew where he was, she also knew he had so much more important things to take care of than her. – That part is heartbreaking. Thankfully, the end is happy – especially the life together – and that’s really remarkable.

I don’t know who knows this text in its entirety – but what I am sure of is that this text would strike the coldest of hearts.

And – perhaps you’ve noticed – I’m very keen that Altair is an unexpected theatre.
And therefore that we present works that we don’t present anywhere else.

And if I were to place an order, I would put this one in the first ones: put the Song of Songs on stage for me.
Find me the voices that will make this text resound in all hearts.
Find me the music that will give it its beauty, its strength and its joy.
Find me the elements of decoration and light that will embellish it forever.

Obviously, this is still impossible to achieve in France. In my country, poetry and spirituality are dormant. I don’t want to believe that they are dead – but they no longer have the right of citizenship.

And if I foolishly go back down to earth and its realistic dimension: who will dare to tell me that this production will not find its audience and that it will be a waste of money?

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