Bright eyes, in a red sweater and black pants, a young girl walks to the front of the stage. Smiles. She is delighted to see the one she loves again that same evening at a café terrace. It’s mild this Friday in November in Paris. Like a promise of happiness. “ It’s the last day before the weekend. We are excited. » She wants to take advantage of it: “I don’t know if I’m the one who will kiss you or the one who will be kissed, the one who will put my hand on your arm or the one who will receive your caress but I can’t wait to be in front of you, hesitant and inflamed at the same time. » The young girl’s heart races. But waiting is pleasure, so much love floods his being.

Later, a couple argues. Anger grows, she ends up leaving him. There, a woman has arranged to meet her beloved twin sister who is arriving from Barcelona to celebrate their anniversary. Everyone is unaware that death lurks. That the horror will devastate everything in its path in a few seconds. On either side of the stage, in a darkness which prefigures mourning, two groups of people stand like an ancient choir.

In turn, they will be actresses and narrators of the tragedy. The monologues follow one another, weaving a red and black web like the scenography (Stéphanie Jasmin). The floor opens up here and there, and nebulous black and white images follow one another on a giant screen. We would like not to hear, but we find ourselves in “hell”. Bodies fall. Without noise, after the unbearable bursts of bullets that we imagine. Neither the locations nor the attacks are named. It’s not necessary.

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Quebec director Denis Marleau takes on Laurent Gaudé’s text, Terrasses, about the attacks of November 13, 2015, with acute, poetic and clinical sensitivity. Standing facing the public, each “character”, victim, nurse, doctor, firefighter, policeman, hostage, anti-terrorist brigade worker or even passing from the “sidewalk opposite”, says the unspeakable and shows that each personal pain forms a collective tragedy. With a sort of neutrality. The facts, only the facts. The report is implacably precise. As if to establish a distance, but it is impossible. On the contrary, the more the show progresses, the more the emotion is perceptible.

Interpretation is also on a thread. Marilou Aussilloux, Sarah Cavalli Pernod, Daniel Delabesse, Charlotte Krenz, Marie-Pier Labrecque… We cannot name the seventeen actors, some of whom come from the young troupe of La Colline. They know that they do not play a role like others. How much is luck, they ask themselves through their characters. What role does chance play? Why him and not me? At the moment of salvation, many had tears in their eyes. They are not the only ones. “We will remain sad for a long time, but not terrified. Not devastated,” writes Laurent Gaudé, in his book, Terrasses (Actes Sud-Papiers). He is wrong.

Terraces, at La Colline (Paris 20th), until June 9. 01 44 62 52 52.