Le Mort & Le Petit Mort (2009/11)

Co-Creator / Director / Death: Ian Mozdzen

Co-Creator / Performer / Marie: Mia van Leeuwen

Le Mort is an “out of line” adaptation of the short story “Le Mort” (or “The Dead Man”) by Georges Bataille …

Flipping through Georges’ writing … poetry that makes me smile … The sky goes poo-poo the sky goes doo-doo … flip a few pages … I masturbate with grape wipe myself with apple … prose I read over and over again … “What’s happening?” she screeched like a slaughtered pig, eyes bugging from her head and streaming with tears. She fell on her ass and her cheeks burst like a canon shooting out a cloud of dust. I’ve been thinking about and creating with Bataille for years now – since Mia brought home the 2004 film Ma mère with the incomparable actress Isabella Huppert. Ma mère is based upon the 1966 (pub.) novel by Bataille, portraying a mother who takes her son on an erotic journey that ends with incest and suicide. So struck was I by this beautifully ugly film that I stuck around to watch the credits roll … needing to learn from where this tale came: Georges Bataille (1897-1962) was a rebel. Philosophy, anthropology, pornography, poetry, mysticism, economics, secret societies … this was his playground … and he always broke the rules. His work was banned, scorned, and dismissed as “only” pornography. But few have delved into eroticism like Bataille – he has emerged as one of the most provocative and original thinkers on human passions. “Le Mort” was originally written in 1943 and wasn’t published until after his death. I first read “Le Mort” in 2006. Immediately, I had visions of the story as a play. How could I not? After all, it did contain some impressively frank and evocative actions – “Marie falls dead drunk,” “Marie sprinkles herself with urine,” and one of my favourites … “Marie bites the dwarf’s cock.” What makes the story attractive to me for an “out of line” response is its sparsity, raw imagery, and caustic spirituality. And, of course, the epic journey of its main character – a lovely lady of many faces named Marie.

— Ian Mozdzen

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Le Petit Mort is a little Le Mort, out of line’s 2009 full-length original work. Based on Georges Bataille’s erotic and surreal story, “The Dead Man,” Le Mort lets us see a woman consumed by loss and shame taking a leap into naked nakedness. And she does it like we all do: she goes on a bender. But no ordinary bender. Only Bataille could dream up this one – filled with urine, vomit, shit, and snatchey snatches. But don’t take our word for it. Go ahead, ask the gnome!

Le Petit Mort pays tribute to those precious souls who have the courage to be an idiot.

The work was performed at 2010 Buddies In Bad Times Theatre, Rhubarb Festival of New Works (Toronto, ON) and at the 2011 Edgy Women Festival (Montreal, QB)

(Photos by James Heaslip)

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