Cie L’immédiat presents La lévitation réelle at WOMADelaide this weekend

Cie L'immédiat presents their roving performance La Lévitation Réelle at WOMADelaide
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French company Cie L’immédiat is coming to WOMADelaide 2024 this weekend with their show called La lévitation réelle (The real levitation), in which it places an emphasis on vertigo and the ambiguous zone between the sad and the funny, the magical and the trickless, the real and the fictional. It’s a show born in a dirty place and out of the idea of a person who can no longer touch the ground. Read our interview with Cie L’immédiat.

Cie L'immédiat presents their roving performance La Lévitation Réelle at WOMADelaide

La lévitation réelle is just one of a dozen shows that Cie L’immédiat has written. How does this one differ from or resemble your other works?

For the past 20 years, L’immédiat has been creating shows in which scenography and machinery play a major role. These are highly technical shows. La lévitation réelle takes place in the milieu of reality, and emerges as much for those who come to see it as for those who know nothing about it. The technique is in the bodies themselves, the illusion is in the spectator’s perception. It emerges, using everyday life as a backdrop.


Why did you choose to emphasise vertigo and loss of bearings in this performance?

We spend most of our time hesitating between hating and adoring vertigo. The accidental, the uncontrollable, is woven into art. We like to be surprised, yet we try to defend ourselves against it, to be prepared for anything. Here we explore this ambiguous zone between the sad and the funny, the magical and the trickless, the real and the fictional… and the vertigo comes through empathy, as if we were watching someone fall and feeling taken in by their sensation, it acts as an immediate connection with the spectator’s body.


Can you tell us about the origins of this show and what inspired you to explore the theme of a frenetic, uncontrollable world full of serial accidents and disasters?

For this piece, it’s a pretty funny story. I was working for the first time on the writing of a show, having no means other than my body as a tool, and I had been offered a big top in Paris between 7 and 10 in the morning for a week. It was winter, the weather was -10 outside and -5 inside, and the place was a party venue. The floor was littered with broken glasses, sticky from spilled beer and cigarette butts, and the person in charge of maintenance poured buckets of water on the ground to clean up the disgusting floor.


Strangely enough, at that moment, I had the idea of a person who could no longer touch the floor.


And for the question: what inspired the theme of a frenetic, uncontrollable world full of accidents and serial disasters? Well… (smiles) Honestly, do you really ask that question?


How did you create an atmosphere that reflects the frenetic, out-of-control world in which the characters in the play live?

In this very piece (“La lévitation réelle“), the uncontrollable is in the body itself, which can no longer submit to the elementary laws of gravity. In MA AIDA, we recreate a theater that disintegrates as the performance progresses.


Can you tell us about the physical techniques used in the performance and how they contribute to the overall experience of the spectator?

The strength of this piece lies in the balance between physical work and a magic trick (a performance with no tricks, but which gives everyone the impression that there are). The difference between looking at something and wanting to scream when you see it. The whole point of this painstaking work (the slightest gesture can tip us over into illusion, or bring us back to reality) is to push the illusion so far (by removing all signs of gravity, all references to the weight’s points of support, its location) that vertigo comes over us all, takes hold of us, and we go a little mad, for a moment. Believing something with our bodies that we don’t believe with our minds.


How do you hope audiences will react to and interpret this work? What impact do you want it to have on them?

Above all, we like to see people’s surprised faces, their pleasure in believing, their laughter, their emotion. There are many interpretations of this piece, including two radically opposed ones, and we like to leave it open, and even try to keep that ambiguity in play!.

La lévitation réelle Cie L'immédiat Credit-Thomas Bohl
Image: Thomas Bohl

How does this performance differ from other contemporary shows? What makes it unique?

La lévitation réelle is a show for people who don’t go to shows. It’s played out in a short space of time, like a sudden appearance, it’s very simple and very elaborate at the same time, and it appeals to the spectator’s body as much as to his imagination. It gives reality a strange taste, and sometimes discredits it a little!


Where have you presented La Lévitation réelle to date? If outside France, where?

Real Levitation premiered in the summer of 2022. Since then, we’ve been invited to Belgium, Switzerland and Denmark. And this summer we’ll be playing in Belgium (April 20 and 21, 2024 – Lattitude 50 – Marchin), Spain (May 11 and 12, 2024 – Trapezi – Reus), Germany (9,10,11,12,13,14 – 16,17,18,19,20,21 – July 23,24,25,26,27,28, 2024 – Hannover), Sweden (August 23 and 24, 2024 – Goteborg).


Have audiences from different cultures/beliefs reacted differently?

For the moment, we haven’t seen any more differences between countries than between cultures. For example, in Marseilles, which is a multicultural city, we reached very different communities, and their reactions were sometimes influenced by their cultural references. But it’s a piece without words, that seems to escape from compartmentalisation, in the end, it could be from anywhere and for anyone.


How many of you are coming to Australia for La Lévitation Réelle?

We’re a team of 7 on tour: 5 artists, 1 external observer and 1 tour manager.


What training do the artists have for this show?

We are fortunate to have been able to bring together artists of a very high professional level, with diverse backgrounds from all over the world (France, Italy, Israel, Cambodia). They have trained at: Ecole Nationale des Arts du Cirque de Rosny-sous-Bois (ENACR), Centre National des Arts du Cirque (C.N.A.C.), Ecole de Cirque PharePonleu Selpak (PPS, Cambodia), “Sandciel”, professional circus school in Tel Aviv, “Cirko Vertigo”, university training in Turin Italy, “Flic” circus school in Turin.


What are the specific challenges involved in creating a show to be performed in a public space?

We have a very joyful problem that often happens to us on the street. Passers-by try to bring the levitating person back to the ground. And we sometimes have to suspend the play for a while. But we gain extraordinary actors, who are extraordinary without realizing it. In fact, we’ve always had a wonderful relationship with these emerging heroes, who help us even when the situation seems absurd and impossible.


Will you be performing only at WOMADelaide or at other venues?

We’ll be performing at Cuba Dupa [in New Zealand] on March 23 and 24, 2024.


Have you already been to Australia?

No, this is our first tour of Oceania, although the company has received a large number of proposals from Australia and New Zealand (over the past three years, we’ve been invited every year to the Auckland Arts Festival and the Adelaide Festival with our big form 間). As for the Sydney Festival, it approached us two years ago for L’homme de Hus. But scheduling, freight and COVID problems have so far prevented us from accepting these proposals.


Anything else you’d like to tell us?

We’d like to talk about the company’s current situation, with possible international distribution:

Since 2023, the company has been making short films, including “Faute de vertige“, which is now available on the France.Tv platform.

“Faute de vertige” by Camille Boitel & Sève Bernard in the Chronocircus collection on replay – Chronocircus (

IMPORTANT: to view the video, you need to create an account and password on the France.Tv platform.


Definition of a work of art as an act of trust in the viewer

The lightest form in our repertoire, and one of the most spectacular. A duet between an artist and a tree, entrusted to the hands of the spectators, to be performed wherever trees grow, in the street, in parks or gardens, even in the forest, why not? ( work from 2005 )


”          ” (this show will not have a name)

Following in the footsteps « L’immédiat » (2007), «           » (2026), is a work of rhythms and accidents, an artistic adventure simultaneous with its viewers. We follow appearing and disappearing beings and their fragile, frantic lives, portraying our trembling world. A large-scale show that carries almost nothing, but always speaks of the place where it takes place. Here, ecology becomes art, transport is replaced by adaptability, and the tour resembles a meeting, a rendezvous between friends, a declaration of art.

We thank Cie L’immédiat and can’t wait to see their roving performance La Lévitation Réelle at WOMADelaide.



WHAT: Cie L’immédiat presents their roving performance La Lévitation Réelle at WOMADelaide

WHEN: Twice a day daily from March 8 to 11, 2024

WHERE: At the WOMADelaide Festival in Adelaide Botanic Park

HOW: Buy your tickets for one, three or four days via this link

HOW MUCH: There are several tickets to choose from depending on your preferences.

Ticket prices for Friday night only are as follows:

  • Adult: $175
  • Concession: $156
  • Youth (ages 13 to 17): $105
  • Child (12 and under with an adult) : Free


Single day ticket prices for Saturday, Sunday or Monday are as follows:

  • Adult $236
  • Concession $212
  • Youth (ages 13 to 17): $145
  • Child (12 and under with an adult) : Free


3 day (for consecutive days) and 4 day tickets are also available.

Prices for 3 day tickets are as follows:

  • Adult: $435
  • Concession: $ 391
  • Youth (13 to 17 years): $261
  • Child (12 and under with an adult) : Free


Ticket prices for all 4 days are as follows:

  • Adult: $455
  • Concession: $409
  • Youth (ages 13 to 17): $273
  • Child (12 and under with an adult) : Free*



AURUS, from the French island of Réunion, will be presenting his music at WOMADelaide next month

French Compagnie On Off brings its water song Le Chant de l’eau to WOMADelaide 2024

Sounds without borders: an eclectic mix in WOMADelaide 2024’s second announcement

A look at the French and Francophone artists in the initial WOMADelaide 2024 line-up announcement



To find out more about events related to France, French culture and the Francophonie taking place in Australia this month, take a look at our What’s on in March

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