We have written about composer Franck Krawczyk, as a collaborator with Peter Brook and cellist Sonia Wieder-Atherton. He also has an interactive children's concert project called Rejouer, created in 2013 and playing this week at the Opéra-Comique in Paris. Pierre Gervasoni wrote a preview (Franck Krawczyk (re)joue les funambules à l’Opéra-Comique, May 5) for Le Monde (my translation):
One does not listen to Rejouer, even with adult ears: one dives into it, body and soul; one lives it, one sees it, like a mirage, like a miracle. Franck Krawczyk has first of all the merit of recalling (to the parents) or teaching (to the children) that music has to do with magic. He has the performance of Rejouer preceded by a short introduction of the imaginary child that he orchestrates like a sorcerer.Gervasoni compares Krawczyk to a tightrope walker in his risk-taking way of opening the performance up so much to the participation of young listeners, but Krawczyk has some expertise at working with the unexpected, in his collaborations with artist Christian Boltanski and choreographer Emio Greco.
Volunteers do not hesitate to join him at the keyboard to discover that "a piano speaks." Two sisters -- not pianists -- engage in a conversation (without words) that reveals that the younger one is trying to dominate the older one. A little boy is invited to play one note before exploring the rest of the instrument and then to come back to play exactly the same key. "That's Rejouer," Franck Krawczyk explains. "A pianist plays one note, he lives his life, then he plays again that beginning note." With this interactive prelude concluded, the affable composer leaves. The room is dark, light shines on the piano, and the musicians comes back, transformed. "When I was your age, I knew a child whom I have not forgotten. Even though we have seen each other only once... no, twice."