Jérémie Le Louët

Le Horla (reading)

Fantastical recital based on the work of Guy de Maupassant

“In getting to the heart of things, you remain there.” Jean Cocteau

What is this invisible, immaterial being by which the narrator is obsessed, to the point of possession?
Who is this Horla, this “hors-là”, this creature from “beyond the beyond”?

The Horla, a tale of the fantastic, written in the best tradition of other luminaries of French literature such as Nodier, Gautier, Balzac, and De Nerval, represents a departure from the otherwise naturalistic work of Maupassant. It is the work of an artist at the height of his career. Given that the writer suffered from bouts of madness towards the end of his life, this novel was seen as a “premonitory autobiography”. It goes without saying that the theme of madness is a central theme and as such the work is often interpreted as a description of clinical madness. The theme of the double has, however, from Edgar Allan Poe to Jorge-Luis Borges, has always been a far more mysterious field of investigation and it is from the standpoint of the irrational that the The Horla’s resonances are infinitesimal.

In his diary, a man tells us of his disarray and worries. All around him he feels the presence of an invisible being, which will gradually lead him to committing irrational acts bordering on insanity. By means of a recital of great intensity, Jérémie Le Louët and Théo Pombet create a bewitching sound and musical-based environment. They enable us to discover one of the classic works of French literature.