Thirty minutes to convince that a story deserves more. Thirty minutes is the maximum duration of the projects selected for the Mises en capsules festival. After two years of forced interruption because of the Covid, this meeting of short theatrical forms returns for its fourteenth edition at the Théâtre Lepic, in Paris. It was in this pretty room in the Art Deco style, nestled on the Montmartre hill, that it was created in 2006, on the initiative of the composer Pierre-Antoine Durand, the actor and producer Benjamin Bellecour and Salomé Lelouch, director of the venue. Mises en capsules is a bit to the theater what the short film is to the cinema: a potential springboard.

In recent years, this festival – where scouting producers and directors mingle with the public – has introduced new authors. Le Porteur d’histoire, by Alexis Michalik, Born under Giscard, by Camille Chamoux, Masks and Noses, by Igor Mendjisky, The Turing Machine, by Benoit Solès or, more recently, Dolto – When Françoise appears, by Eric Bu, and La Métamorphose des cigognes, by Marc Arnaud, all these shows started here, in short form, before flourishing in Parisian theaters and on tour. Actors then unknown, such as Camille Cottin, Pierre Niney, Jonathan Cohen, Sara Giraudeau, etc., also participated in the adventure. “Creating, inventing, mixing genres, personalities, ages, this is the DNA of the festival”, summarize the organizers.

Surprise effect

This year, out of more than two hundred proposals, sixteen were selected. Each evening, five of them are played, spaced out with short intermissions for changes of scenery. The spectator draws as he pleases and comes at the time of his choice. The rhythm of the evening and the effect of surprise aroused by the changes of universe, which each time give the impression of being at a preview, ensure that you are never bored. Thirty minutes can be pleasantly frustrating when the show is good, or just enough when the feeling that it’s all been told.

The night we were there, it was about lost friendships, abandoned dreams, impossible love, family emancipation, freaking out… From a head teacher’s office to an apartment at the top of a From a house where a mother is dying to an icy meal of in-laws, the creations, bringing together two to nine characters, play on all registers, from comedy to drama.

Inventive and absurd at will, Fly me, fly me, fly me, capsule imagined by Marie-Julie Baup, delighted us. The author plays with talent the character of Lilette, who has called on a “life counselor” (irresistible Nicolas Martinez) to overcome her sickly shyness. This charming minx, ready to do anything to overcome her fears, chooses to announce to the crowd, in the canteen of her company, in front of colorful employees (Sipan Mouradian, Serge Da Silva, Brigitte Belle), that she would like to end with her virginity.

While at each edition of Mises en capsules, about a third of the creations find a producer, we bet that this one is one of them. Because we would really like that Fly me, fly me, fly me can, without pun intended, take flight.