French theatre presents : Fendre les lacs

May 9–12, 2018 at 8 p.m. in the NAC Azrieli Studio

“A powerful wind of change sweeps through Fendre les lacs … by Steve Gagnon.
A burning intensity, coupled with a visceral thirst for freedom, delivered by a cast
that isn’t afraid of total immersion ... Literally and figuratively.”

Geneviève Bouchard, Le Soleil, April 13, 2016 (transl.)


OTTAWA, April 20, 2018 – An intense and spellbinding Chekhovian psychological drama set in a forest, about an isolated community of savage women and child–men, all burning with the desire to shake things up. A fertile exploration of the storms and upheavals of life.

By a lake deep in the forest, eight people struggle to find meaning in their suffocating lives: Élie, Emma, Thomas, Louise, Adèle, Christian, Léon and Martin. As an antidote to boredom and a cry for help, they surrender to Steve Gagnon’s raw, immediate dialogue to express a rage that seems limitless. On an incredible watery set, this intrigue of desperation unfolds like a choral saga, directed by the playwright and performed by a cast of wholly committed actors.


“Marie Renée Bourget Harvey’s set is a marvel. We are literally at the edge of a lake:
we hear the waves lapping and rustling, and we experience that comforting sense of infinity
that you sometimes get sitting on the shore, just watching the world go by.”

Marie-Claire Girard, Le Huffington Post, March 14, 2016 (transl.)


Written and directed by Steve Gagnon // With: Marie-Josée Bastien, Frédérick Bouffard, Véronique Côté, Steve Gagnon, Frédéric Lemay, Guillaume Perreault, Pascale Renaud-Hébert and Claudiane Ruelland // Assistant director: Adèle Saint-Amand // Production Director: Adèle Saint-Amand and Maude St-Pierre // Sets and props: Marie-Renée Bourget Harvey // Lighting: Martin Sirois // Music: Uberko // Costumes: Jennifer Tremblay // Stage manager: Amélie-Claude Riopel // Technical director: Pierre Gagné and Émilie Potvin

Produced by Théâtre Jésus, Shakespeare et Caroline

Running time is approximately 1 hour and 45 minutes with no intermission.



Steve Gagnon’s theatre, like the man himself, is luminous and passionate. A graduate of the Conservatoire d’art dramatique du Québec, this accomplished playwright, actor and director—equally at ease with Camus and Ibsen, Réjean Ducharme and Claude Gauvreau—writes, performs and directs with focused intensity. From La montagne rouge (Sang) to Fendre les lacs by way of En dessous de vos corps je trouverai ce qui est immense et qui ne s’arrête pas, his plays stand out for their undercurrent of anger and powerful ensemble work. He is also the author of an essay entitled Je serai un territoire fier et tu déposeras tes meubles : réflexions et espoirs pour l’homme du 21e siècle (“I will be a proud territory and you will drop off your furniture: thoughts and hopes for the 21st‑century man”).

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