An original creation
for young audiences

Once a year, on the day of the Carnival of the Animals, colours and sounds pour into a strange sand city ruled by a weary old king, bringing it to life. On a day like no other, when everything is turned upside down, we follow Toumaï on his quest to find himself. On the way, he meets various beings, including a panther, Khaos, a macaw, and Sing, who will sing his own path into existence, set to the choreography of Coralie Salonne. 

Do we know who we are before we cross paths with the Other? After a chance meeting with a cello, a violin and an accordion, Toumaï, who’s never been able to see beyond the boundaries of his world, is about to find out. 

A violin, a cello and an accordion mingle with the sounds of words… 

From January to June 2024, Les Illuminations are offering a variety of workshops in residence at Collège Saint-Michel de Picpus. Schoolchildren in sixième are involved in the creative process, culminating in a show at the Théâtre de l’Usine in Saint-Céré in spring 2024. The workshops, which foster experimentation and exploration, will then provide opportunities to go outside Paris and meet children who do not have access to theatre and music. 

« « The city resembled a kind of rich nomadic encampment undulating in the wind. The procession had just begun, and already the city was soaking up the colours and sounds that ran along the drains, filtering from its catacombs to its dome, pouring into the gutters, streaming over heads, bodies, faces, right down to the dregs. 

Once a year, for the inaugural balloon toss, our little world raised its eyes to the heavens. The little ones, at the head of the parade and mounted on the backs of solemnly silent dominant males, yelped, cooed, mewed with pleasure at this escape and, until they were swallowed by the clouds, never took their eyes off the balloons. Next came one or two rows of pretentious peacocks whose ugly voices forbade them to sing, followed by waddling penguins, seals and sea lions, flapping their fins to set the pace. 

Under the eyes of the lions and the chameleons, turning pale with envy, fairground animals mingled with songbirds in crazy colours. 

Here and there, monkeys, court jesters laden with bells, performed all manner of antics for the admiring crowd. The cohort, made up of powerful beasts, had plenty of oomph. Roaring elephants and ventriloquist hippos made your ribs jingle and your teeth clack like castanets.

Like the others, I was jumping, hollering, whistling and applauding, when a roar that wasn’t in unison with the party drew me into an adjacent street. » 

• Isabelle JUNCA | Author;
• Pascal ZAVARO | Composer;
• Coralie SALONNE | Stage director;
• Jean-Philippe THOMANN | Sets and Costumes;

• Camille THÉVENEAU | Violin;
• Théo OULD | Accordeon;
• Djahîz GIL | Actor