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L’Insolite Mécanique: Lift Off (Je brasse de l’air)

London International Mime Festival 2018

a photo of a woman against a black background and a

Be transported into a mysterious world of shadow and light, where mechanical installations come alive, illuminating Magali Rousseau’s childhood dream of achieving flight. 

An enigmatic yet charismatic artist tells her story, of a little girl wishing to escape by becoming a master of the air. As she leads us all to different parts of the atmospherically lit stage, her simple words become a symbolic force for this promenade performance in which exquisite metal creatures emerge from the dark. Some small, some very large, each is an actor, a work of art in its own right, set into action through steam power, flame, time or weight, all playing their part in this ingenious theatrical tale.

Rousseau’s astonishingly engineered machines are born out of a career working in set and prop design. Here she collaborates with musician Stéphane Diskus, whose live clarinet playing heightens the unusual ambience, to relate a most personal memory: how trying to fly became an act of resistance. A journey into the imagination, then, for all the dreamers, young and old alike.

Tagged with: Theatre & dance

45 minutes/no interval

Age guidance 7+

Performed in English and French


Sat 27 Jan, 3pm
Post-show talk

This is a promenade performance. Please contact box office with any access requirements.

This performance contains a fish

Presented by the Barbican in association with London International Mime Festival

Supported by Grand Parquet – Paris, Vélo Théâtre – Apt, Anis Gras le lieu de l’autre – Arcueil, La Mécanique des Anges, Jardin d’Alice – Paris and Cie Les Anges au Plafond

This visit to London is supported by Institut français du Royaume-Uni


‘She plays with delicacy and lightness; we are seduced‘
La Nouvelle République (France)


The Pit