Le Projet Pupitre: A Whole Different Sound

                             Natalie Vilkoff

Before the play began I thought I knew what I was in for, but boy was I in for a surprise!

I think Le Projet Pupitre, directed by Michel Lefebre, is a good play with an original idea and found it quite enjoyable (even though I found the “music” quite irritating a times). Furthermore, the lighting doesn’t play an important role and I often found it just as irritating as the sound.

Yann and Guillaume, played by Yann Godbout and Guillaume Lévesque, are 2 students that are taking a dictee and discover that they can make music with their pencil and paper, and they start making music, instead of writing the dictee (as they are supposed to) yet the music sill has something to do with the dictee that they are currently taking (there are three in all: Safari, Far West and Concert).

There was no particular time period that the play was set in and the set consisted of two desks, some fluorescent lights, and a wooden platform that the desks were standing on. So all in all, a pretty simple set up. The wooden desks had a vertically opening lid and the performer’ kept their “instruments” inside. One can assume that the use of these large, wooden desk is in order to create a certain sound amplification.

At times, I found the “music” to be quite repetitive (especially during the concert and safari dictee) and I began to get bored. But then, just as my mind was about to doze of, the actors started to create very upbeat, loud and “angry” sounds that got me awake instantly. Yet I still didn’t quite enjoy this audio “roller coaster”.

The climax of the play for me was when Yann brought out the giant pencil which caused me to tense because I was readying myself for an outrageously loud sound and, unfortunately for my ears, it was.

At the end of the show, before the audience had a chance to leave, the actors explained how they created all the sounds, which certainly ruined the mystery and illusion of the performance for many, myself included.

This play is not recommended for those who are easily irritated or have sensitive ears.