Here we go! The wait had become too long. After more than two months of shooting, hundreds of takes, few means and several dozens of hours of editing later, the troupe of the Petits Chenapans has officially made its comeback with the release of their video clip as burlesque as it is solidary.
On a cover of an Annie Cordy song, “La bonne du curé”, renamed “À deux doigts de craquer”, our eleven artists evoke with humor and sincerity the malaise and distress of French students, collateral victims of the Covid-19 pandemic. Isolation, loneliness, psychological and financial difficulties… all the subjects related to the student situation are approached in an offbeat way.
“Through this video, we wanted to send a wink to the students in France who are suffering, to give them a smile for the time of a video,” describes Jocelyn Dordé, the founder of both Taramana and the Petits Chenapans troupe. And the smiles also appeared on the faces of the actors: all of them unanimously “loved” participating in this project!
EMPATHY IN ALL ITS FORMS
Solidarity has no borders, even with the 10,000 kilometers of distance that separate France from Cambodia. On the contrary. This video allowed the actors to become aware of the fate of French students and thus to lessen the differences. “Participating in this video allowed me to understand much better the life of French students during Covid. It’s harder than in Cambodia because here we can always go out, see our friends and work in groups,” says Vuthny in perfect French.
As in France, strict measures have been taken by the Cambodian authorities to limit the spread of the virus impacting the lives of the Khmers. A similar situation that “shows that we are all affected by the Covid-19 pandemic,” says Sereykanha. Before the filming began, I learned that French students were facing many problems… but it’s not just the French who are impacted but all students around the world.”
Their video was originally intended to be presented during the International Day for Francophonie at the French Institute in Phnom Penh. Valentine Gigaudaut, cooperation attaché for the French-speaking world at the embassy (see her interview in our April newsletter), already knew the Petits Chenapans theater troupe and suggested that they broadcast a video at the end of the annual dictation.
It was a coincidence, since at the same time the idea of a parody video on the theme of Covid came up, after the founder of Taramana had reinvented the lyrics of an Annie Cordy song. “I wanted to pay tribute to her,” he recalls. That’s when the adventure began; Action!
FUN WITHOUT TRICKS
The filming team was then activated around the founder of Les Petits Chenapans: Laurène Belcour, Camille Jallet and Laurie Andriamanarivo as assistant directors for the sets, costumes and choreography, Benoît Saunier as interpreter, Eng Sovan Daro and Doeu Visal behind the cameras and Camille Jallet with a second hat as video editor.
No statuette or Oscar for our star actors yet, but a big thank you to : Din Vuthny, Chao Monyroth, Chhum Vathana, Din Chandina, Din Simanith, Kan Meng Hong, Pich Sambath Seyha, Seang Pich Maniline, Tola Sophavin, Vin Kimlang and Vuthy Sereykanha.
Unfortunately, the virus had its way with us again. The day and the screening had to be cancelled. A disappointment for the artists but no matter, the memories of the shooting will remain engraved. The video of the making of will prove to you that on the set of the shooting, installed in the center Taramana Magdalena, the good mood and the laughter were not special effects.
For more images of the shooting, access our photo album HERE.
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