“Bouiner” is a vernacular term from the Vendée and Brittany areas of France meaning “to make a boin”. And a “boin” is an object that has been created out of nothing. This show has been conceived as a series of interwoven video clips.
At Archaos, the “bouinax” are the technical teams and stagehands who live in groups and are on a perpetual hunt for entertainment, whether it be cruel or tender. This pursuit is to the detriment of solitary artists that have escaped from another time, the tightrope walkers in the sky, the couples of balancing artists united or disunited, the jugglers, the acrobats, the overlooked trapeze artists...
Bouinax is accompanied by a group of hard-rock musicians and the din of jackhammers, angle grinders, and electric toothbrushes.
Performers: Margot Marguerite, Christophe Le Masne, Danielle Le Pierrès, Christophe Lelarge, Alex Demay, Dominique d’Angelo, Cyril Casmèze, Ramon Fernandez, Marie Seclet, Ingela Hinas, Didier Pasquette, Jean-Paul Lefeuvre, Alain Constant, Sean Bridges, Jason Kowacz, Gemma Cooper, Boris Arquier, Lee Rickler, Nicole Auger-Lafitte, Christian Charasse, Joachim Borgwardt, Laurent Touret, Ana Aeddeger, Lienhard Anz, Dirk Steinhausen, Frank Lenoir, Stephane Duves, Sarah Sankey, Dominique Attali, Suzie Longbottom, Anabel Lines, Eddie Keane, Antonia Beamish, Jean-Claude Grenier, Nathalie Tarlet, Sylvie Lafille, Sue Brent, Robin Rockin, Pascal Beaune, Pascal Tonadre, Kamel Nedjar, Colin Campbell, Chris Axelsen, Hugh Thomas, Guillaume Quillard, Dominique Margot, Christophe Perrodin, Misha Eligoloff, Peter Van Valkenhoeff, Gelbrich Bierma, Nordin Bekri, Dominique Lanne, Eric Gaudry, Rita Van Opzeeland, Julian Haggazoid, Niki Haggazoid, Serge Froissard, Marc Gely, Marjorie Laurent, Victor Deviastilny, Natasha Deviastilnaia, Sue Brent, Hervé Souaille, Philippe Delaitre
Les Chihuahua: Nicolas Romero “Napo” (vocals, guitar), Jean-Paul Correa “Pop” (guitar), Théodore Scipio (bass), François Mahuzenski (keyboard), Léon Kouaweble (drums), Jean-Marc Vaghter “Mamak” (alto sax), Pierre Chanteau “Peter” (tenor sax)
Les Marcel Burins: Laurent Attali (keyboards, vocals), Pierre Billon (drums), Alain Cantarel (guitar), Pascal Fernandez (bass), Laurent Georges (sax)
“Archaos: The Mad Max of laughter... This 70-strong company, which won the Prix National du Cirque and the British version of the Oscar, is, in fact, a formidable ‘ideas machine’. With cinematic projections, dented stock cars bouncing and whirring around the ring, and lasers, Archaos employs all manner of effects and uses the most comical or dramatic situations to create an impression of danger. And all of this is set to rock music... With its sense of humor and paradox, Archaos... puts on a welcoming, human show...”
– France Soir, 6 January 1990
“Permanent apocalypse… Boosted by last summer’s Best Show award at the Edinburgh Festival, the modern-archaic Archaos company combines provocation and technical perfection, ‘gory’ horror and the poetry of risk. Following their success at the Cirque d’Hiver Bouglione, they return to the Grande Halle de la Villette from April 10 to 30. Not for the faint of heart.”
– Gilles Costaz, Theatres, March 1990
“Archaos does its own circus… Every second, something happens... There’s everything in Archaos, that’s its pride and joy... Like characters from I Vitelloni, all too happy to do their style of circus, have fun with derision, laugh instead of cry. It’s deliberately worse, funny, and cruel at the same time, both anecdotal and vital...”
– Agnès Dalbard, Le Parisien, 10 April 1990
“Archaos on stage. A must-see... One thinks of Buster Keaton, for the almost cinematographic visual aspect of their acts and gags. As in the days of silent cinema, Archaos uses the language of the senses... No words. Just the emotion that images and sounds can give us. And a prodigious sense of staging... The result of this symbiosis is a show that bursts with passion and leaves you breathless with admiration.”
– Bertrand Crimail, V.S.D., 18 January 1990
“Archaos... They’re back! Clowns-hoodlums, an angelic biker and acrobat, a plump fakir, a smurfing juggler… the archaotic tribe shakes up (with laughter) the Cirque d’Hiver with their fake chainsaw duels and crazy cars. Two hours of post-industrial delirium where anything is possible. There’s no doubt about it: this new show is even funnier and more rhythmic than last year’s. Archaos? More than a circus: a crater.”
– Frédéric Pagès, Le Canard enchainé, 10 January 1990
“Archaos at the Cirque d’Hiver... In the lair of the Cirque d’Hiver... A circus show unlike any other (the term ‘character’ is not gratuitous, but the ‘circus’ nonetheless. At least that’s what Guy Carrara, the co-director with Pierrot Bidon, says. After all, they’ve just been awarded the Prix National du Cirque... ‘None of us comes from the circus ring,’ he admits. ‘We have a different culture. We’re looking for a new language that speaks to today’s audiences... Our aim is to convey emotions, drawing on the full range of human feelings: cruelty, solitude, the idea of the horde, but also tenderness and love. This is undoubtedly what gives the work its sense of violence. But it’s not us who are violent. It’s life... The audience thinks what it wants. We don’t have a discourse, a message to deliver. We’re here to provoke reactions. That’s all...’”
– Didier Mereuze, La Croix, 10 January 1990
“Archaos comes to North America… The company, which arrives in North America via Toronto this week, includes representatives of 27 nationalities. They have been recruited from all over Europe, Australia, and Brazil through the course of successive tours since the company was founded. Beginning last year, another Archaos troupe has been presenting another show at the same time. Métal Clown is currently being performed in Manchester... The troupe in America offers BX-91: as beautiful as war. There are 45 of them, plus two babies... As soon as spectators passed through the stadium turnstiles and came upon the welcoming village of mutants, they knew that what was sheltered under this blue-and-white big top would be the opposite of the Cirque du Soleil... Thanks to Archaos’ delirium, these brave souls will have been able to watch a show in complete safety, a spectacle that won’t have been that far a cry from what they’ve seen all year on TV. From the Gulf War to the latest Metallica video. Except that they will have laughed. Even if it’s often the jaundiced laughter that can only be provoked by violence that is transformed into mockery... Clowns that scare, machines that explode, and thrills that make you think...”
– La Presse, 21 September 1991