Ziz

Programming / to stage

Ziz is strange.
He is a character that almost doesn’t exist.
And yet he has lived through the centuries – and centuries from now, someone will talk about him again.

Will you come with me tonight to try to see a character who almost doesn’t exist?

No ? oh no, no no no, don’t tell me that you’re tired – we are tired, is that sooo important? no no I don’t want to worry about that, finding Ziz is so much more exciting than going to bed, right?

How do you grumble? But yes, I know you’re going to come with me, and waste time looking for something that doesn’t exist at all, but since I swore that yes, sure, just look hard enough, you’ll come with me – I know. You’re wonderful.

Yes, but, hey, I’m still a girl. It seems that we all are tiring on this point, always making sure: are you okay? are you coming? are you still glad you came? – to the point that it’s not okay anymore, yes all right, it’s annoying this obsession that girls have. But as I am a real girl, impossible – je vous jure – impossible to resist. Well then, shall we go?

Are you dismayed? but no, I can’t believe that – it’s better to have a good laugh now, because tonight’s walk is totally random.
Tonight, we’re going to look for a King who doesn’t exist.

Of Ziz, there are only a few lines lost in the very ancient and sacred texts.
Ziz is a king.
A king and a bird.
A primordial bird.

Its plumage is not describable – it is made of all the colors that exist and all the colors that do not exist
Its feathers are not imaginable, they have all the shapes and all the softness of feathers since the world is world
Its song is so pure that only the most beautiful of birds can perceive its harmony

And above all, no one has ever really seen Ziz in his entirety.
We have seen some feathers
We saw a piece of his beak
We heard a few seconds of his song
We saw his huge shadow passing over our heads
But he’s too bright
Too free,
Too happy
Too big
impossible to describe or draw King Ziz

Do you know why ?

How do you fit joy into a description? It is not possible at all.

That’s why there are only a few lines about Ziz.

And Ziz is not alone. His two companions are better known than he is – and those are scary.

Have you ever heard of the terrifying beasts Behemoth and Leviathan?
Ziz is the third.
To Behemoth was given the Earth –
To Leviathan, the Sea.
To Ziz, the Sky.

The texts tell us that Behemoth and Leviathan will return to Earth at the end of days.
Behemoth, the perfect beast – Leviathan, the perfect monster.
The two of them awake…

Conference Of the Birds – Farîd-ud-Dîn ‘Attâr

But Ziz is gone – he is not in the horrific nightmares of the end of the world.
Probably because of the few lines left about him, it is said that he is the one who cannot really be described, he is out of the frame.
He doesn’t like frames.
He doesn’t like rules at all.
He doesn’t like condemnation, atrocities, hatred and war.

Since he only appears in very, very, very ancient texts, he is associated with God – Ziz is the king who amuses God and makes him laugh. He enchants him with his songs, amuses him with his antics, and moves him when he hides among the young leaves of the spring trees – and just passes a piece of his beak – did you see me? but how did you do it?

In the texts, he is so brief that he is simply like a spark of the joy of living.

So obviously, since no one talks about King Ziz, the bird that flies out of the frame, the magnificent laughter, creator of all the joy in the world, of all the lightness, of everything that is not geometrical, square, drawn, smoothed, creator of all the nooks and crannies, of all the surprises that fall on us and enchant us – obviously, I would so much like to have a show in honor of this king.

It would be a show full of music – of course
Full of bright colors, full of intermingled colors, full of shapes, full of surprises
A show that tells the joy of freedom to live
A show that is not at all serious, yes I know, it’s not serious.

Alain Thomas – Joy of the birds

A show that could start with a few notes, very small, very frail, coming from a tangle of branches, in a coming morning light.

But it would be to make you laugh – at least smile –
So no, there can only be music, even if music can often make you smile
We need characters that come to get you – you really, and these characters will be quite responsible for surprising you and bringing at least a smile to your face.
So on that point, I know. Nothing is harder to pull off.
If the laughter is forced, it’s a failure.
If the jokes are crude, it fails.
Laughter and joy of living are not at all easy to put together.

But here too, I have every confidence – there are so many artists who manage this feat that they will undoubtedly succeed in giving you a big, beautiful smile, the smile that comes from King Ziz, from his fantasy and his lightness.
This monster is such an exceptional monster – doesn’t he deserve a nice show?

It was not so long this walk, did you see? Besides, it was made to make you smile – it’s good to smile before going to sleep, don’t you think?

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Featured Image : Conference of the Birds – Farîd-ud-Dîn ‘Attâr

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