Career path. Encounters...

As I was interested in writing, in poetry, in the diversity of cultural universes and the different resonances of languages, I was drawn towards the musical element, which got a crystallised importance in my shows when I encountered composers Dominique Probst – at the time of my first stage directions – and then Ramon de Herrera.

It is also probably the reason why I got so attached to the particular work on the structure of language, which started when I directed Racine's Andromache. It was a fundamental step which influenced all my further creations. The deep breathing of a text, its pulse, became inevitable dimensions of my stage direction work.

Then I met a city. Lisbon, like suspended in the light of the Tagus River, made me want to read Portuguese authors. Secret correspondences in the perception of time, of space, of the liquid element, in an identity quest.


Then there was the encounter with Sophia de Mello Breyner, a great figure of contemporary poetry, whose works reached a vast audience in Portugal; there was, in Lisbon, the production of Navigations, adapted from one of her books of poems, with an original music by Dominique Probst.

Then I met Maria Judite de Carvalho, a novelist and short-story writer, and encountered the work of other authors, and also the Portuguese institutions that fully supported this new step of my career, which was to last several years – and to which I have not, by the way, put an end yet... That is when I first produced Récitals de textes: By the Tagus…, Now we found each other again... and more recently Life and Dream, Time's Sideslips.

Other encounters happened. Encounters with actors I “met” in the theatre workshops I had just launched – actors who got passionate about the specific work I was offering, about the fragility and strength of the genre, the "linen thread of words"*, the essence of emotion.
Encounters with a surprised, touched audience, who took pleasure in travelling along with the images and sensations suggested to their imagination by those close-ups on actors and words.
And the encounter with a field burnt by the sun, where the Antigone tragedy unfurled, in the course of an experience including workshops and performances.

And the road carried on, deepening, re-visiting all these elements, “swinging” between tragedy and contemporary writers, between Récitals de textes and stage direction…
Anne Petit

* in the poem Le Minotaure by Sophia de Mello Breyner in / Méditerranée translated by Joaquim Vital, editions de la Différence