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The woman of shadow and light | Journalism

In her 35 years, Lucie Bazzo has designed lighting for an astounding number of theater and dance performances. I wanted to meet her. She was visibly surprised. It must be said that for one who deftly handles light, shadow is the area in which she prefers to find herself.

I got the idea to do this interview because this designer, famous in the art world, is once again associated with Robert Lepage design. with Riopelle Projectwhen watching Duceppe, she happily found the man who made her take her first steps at the end of the eighties thanks to two river shows.

“It started out really strong for me. She confided in me at Café Bloom in Pointe-Saint-Charles, my longtime adopted neighborhood. You could say I learned on the job.”

At the time, Lucie Bazzo had just finished the Conservatoire d’art Dramatique de Québec, from which she graduated with training in set, costume, and prop design. But she left the establishment with a desire to make the limelight.

After noticing his talent during the Conservatoire’s year-end show, Robert Lepage asked him to come and work with him on the acclaimed six-hour version. Dragon trilogy Which should be presented in June 1987 in the hangar of N.NOh 9 from Old Port as part of the Festival of Theater of the Americas (FTA). “I’m done playing Vinci [au Musée des beaux-arts de Montréal] And he came to meet us to do Intensity Lighting,” Lucy Pazzo recalls.

Photo by Dani Tellon, courtesy of DUCEPPE

scene from Riopelle Project

This show is a life changing experience. “It was my school. I made mistakes. I came home at 8 in the morning, picked things up and hung out. I learned a lot of things.”

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Then continue to create tectonic plates, a show presented in March 1990 at the station Jean-Talon, an abandoned place at that time. Then she became a specialist in non-theatrical settings.

I also discovered the world of dance. She was invited by many choreographers during the following years: Jocelyn Monpetit, Harold Riom, José Navas, Jeannette Lorraine, Benoit Lachambre and many others.

In total, Lucie Bazzo has created lighting for 55 theatrical performances and 35 dance performances. These experiences were mostly wonderful moments of creation. But she also had bad experiences. “I didn’t get upset so much, but the times it happened it was because of a misunderstanding on my part or the creator. I remember a show with a choreographer. I didn’t know where to go. She had someone else fix the lights. I planted myself straight.” .»

For fifteen years, Lucy Pazzo and Robert Lepage have walked parallel paths. met with Quillsin 2016, and then with SLĀV And kanata, In 2018. “Yes, I lived through those two crisis periods,” she says simply with a smirk. Remember, activists criticized Robert Lepage for showing cultural appropriation and a lack of diversity within these products.

I’ve always been fascinated by the way stylists (sets, costumes, lighting) fit a director’s approach. How does mayonnaise grow?

She says dialogue between designers is key. Supposed to to merge. Lighting can kill fashion. If you put the wrong blue on a black suit, it will appear brown.

Lucy Pazo

Then there is the technical side. Lucie Bazzo launches a description of the techniques available to lighting designers today. You lost me in ten seconds. “For a long time, I’ve been making plans by hand. Creative residencies that allow us to test things out in the theater are way overdue. Now, there are programs that allow us to see things.”

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Pazos, there aren’t many of them in Montreal. You might have guessed that Lucy is the sister of Marie France, the Lady of Radio and Television. Their father, of Italian descent, was a longshoreman in the port of Montreal. He married their mother, a Quebec native, who was studying sewing.

Our parents wanted us to have free professions. My sister and I studied plastic arts for the first time. They had anxiety, but they trusted us. Then my sister studied sociology and I studied theater.

Lucy Pazo

From this training, Lucie Bazzo has retained a taste for variety. In addition to lighting, she devotes herself to photography, which is a necessary medium for light. Armed with her phone, she loves to immortalize borrowed images of the city and the night.

During the pandemic, she’s been on her bike cruising near stores. “That was the only thing that opened,” she said. She also produced a series dedicated to “Cabin carpark. I have shown some confusion as to the beauty of these places. On the contrary, she said. There is incredible poetry. All these cottages have their own personality. But they disappear one by one. »

During the Phénomena Festival, you may have noticed these three-dimensional panels that appear in shop windows. They are the work of Lucy Pazzo. “These are small flare groups. I add one or two a year.”

Before leaving, I told her of my surprise to see that, with her rich experience, she does not teach the basics of lighting in theater schools. “I’ve always had impostor syndrome. I’m not very pedagogical. And then, how do I teach something I’m still learning?”

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Riopelle Project It is being performed until June 11th at the Duceppe Theatre. All tickets for the performances have been sold out.