Saigon 19/10/2019

International Committee Program



Theatre company Les Hommes Approximatifs (valence, France / Ho Chi Minh city, Vietnam)
The authors:
Caroline Nguyen and participants of the performance
3 h 20 min with two intermissions
1, 2, 3 Jun 2017
French, Vietnamese
Text — winner of the Commission nationale d'aide à la création de textes dramatiques — ARTCENA; the Prize Georges Lerminier of the Union of French Theater critics

Restaurant "Saigon" is located in modern Paris, however, here we can hear Vietnamese songs and feel the lively atmosphere of the restaurants of Saigon of the 1950s, memories of departure of the last French from Indochina in 1956, and the time of lifting the trade embargo and establishing diplomatic relations with the United States in 1996, which made it possible to return to Vietnam. People come to this restaurant to dine, to talk about love, to sing Vietnamese songs and to cry. This is the place where the past and the future meet; this is where reality encounters dreams. Characters of the performance are Vietnamese immigrants and Marie-Antoinette who left Vietnam in 1954 and now runs the restaurant.

In the Vietnamese culture there is a concept of "the foreign Vietnamese" — the ethnic Vietnamese who moved to another country rejecting their native language and traditions. Saigon tells real stories of these "foreign Vietnamese", collected by Caroline Nguyen and her team.

The theme of Saigon is quite personal for Caroline Nguyen, as she is a daughter of an immigrant from Vietnam and a Frenchman.

Due to the performance Caroline Nguyen was distinguished as the Best Young Director according to the French Society of Dramatic Authors and Composers (Société des Auteurs et Compositeurs Dramatiques) in 2018 Saigon also claimed to win in three nominations of the Molière Award, a major theatre prize in France: Best Show, Best Set and Best Work of a Modern French Play Writer.

The performance was a participant of the Main Program of the Avignon Festival in 2017




Caroline Arrouas

Maurin Olles

Dan Artus

Adeline Guillot

Anh Tran Nghia

Hiep Tran Nghia

Thi Truc Ly Huynh

Phu Hau Nguyen or Diem Nguyen

Hoang Son Lê

Phu Hau Nguyen

Thi My Chau Nguyen

Thi Thanh Thu Tô

Caroline Guiela Nguyen
Artistic Collaboration
Claire Calvi
Set Design
Alice Duchange
Costume Design
Benjamin Moreau
Jérémie Papin
Sound and Music Design
Antoine Richard
Teddy Gauliat-Pitois
Dramaturgy and surtitles
Jérémie Scheidler, Manon Worms
Dramaturgy trainee
Hugo Soubise
Duc Duy Nguyen
Thi Thanh Thu Tô
Script consultat
Nicolas Fleureau
Project Manager
Jérôme Masson
Light design assistant
Sébastien Lemarchand
Sound design assistant
Orane Duclos
Nina Millet and Mathieu Schmaltz (violin), Aurélie Métivier (viola), Lydie Lefebvre (cello), Teddy Gauliat-Pitois (piano), Pierric Plathier (guitar)
Aude Bretagne, Dominique Fournier, Barbara Mornet, Frédérique Payot, Pascale Barré
Wigs and make-up
Christelle Paillard
Caroline Guiela Nguyen with the whole participants of the performance