Fanfreluche has made hundreds of thousands of young people dream for 15 years, but few knew what was hidden beneath his features.
Kim Yaroshevskaya celebrated her 100th birthday last Sunday. François Legault had the good sense to mark the anniversary with a warm message Vanverloche And I watched the amazing adventures of the characters Surprise box Which she was a part of. It took years before Barbie, born in 1959, would end up dethroning Fanfreluche in the hearts of Quebec viewers.
Unknown to anyone in high places, she wrote an entire season of scripts for Pym (Louis DeSantis) and Saul (Marc Favreau). I was undercover to replace my twin brother who had created these two clown characters and was spending a year in Europe. Then I was lucky enough that Fernand Doré, Director of Youth Programs at Radio-Canada, chose me as the lead author of Surprise box. Unfortunately, the 1958-1959 season ended abruptly due to a strike by famous directors.
FANFRELUCHE is make-up
Denise Marsan, wife of poet Roland Giguere, founded the concept Surprise box. My only advantage was to increase the numbers of Fanfreluche, create other characters, extend the show to one hour and direct Guy Sanche. With him, I embodied the character of Bobino and his unseen interlocutors Bobino A show in itself. Meanwhile, young Kim Yaroshevskaya was horrified by how important her character was.
Despite Fanfreluche’s enormous reputation and numerous successes on stage, and despite more than fifteen films and more than twenty television series, Kim Yaroshevskaya never became a popular star.
One day, I met her at the IGA fishmonger in Ile de Sore, where she lived. I asked the fishmongers on duty if they knew who she was. The two men who were old enough to see Vanverloche On TV, they shrugged. They had no idea who he was. When I told them that she was the actress who portrayed Fanfreluche, they were full of excuses. Of course, they knew who Fanfreluche was!
A very humble star
As we left the store, Kim gently told me that I had made her blush by recognizing her that way in front of the fishmongers she regularly deals with. “But I’m very happy that they remember Fanfrelucci,” she added. I have had Kim play in several series I have written including Grand Duke, Banana peel, Of love and friendship And EntkadioBut none of the characters she played overshadowed the Fanfreluche doll.
Kim Yaroshevskaya, a woman as hardened as steel beneath a fragile exterior, has never forgotten the tragic memory of her father, who suffered for years in Stalin’s concentration camps. As for his mother, she will die of pain. So Kim filled her memory of her grandmother’s house with tales and stories that nourished the Fanfriloch doll for many years, making happy days for an entire generation.
Kim has just turned a hundred years old, but it is not a century, but an entire millennium of memories and stories of which she seems to be the custodian.