Jacques Fornier (94) died in Besançon on November 14. In 1956, a disciple of Jacques Copeau, he founded the Troupe de Bourgogne in Beaune, with eleven actors, including Roland Bertin, who would become one of Patrice Chéreau’s favorite actors, before joining the Comédie-Française, where he will be with superb Brecht’s Galilee seen by Vitez. In 1960, under the reign of André Malraux in culture, it is the label of national dramatic center, with the title Théâtre de Bourgogne. Fornier directs it for fifteen years. He staged a repertoire in accordance with the criteria of decentralization at the time; Shakespeare, Molière, Marivaux, Beaumarchais, Musset, Feydeau, Tchekhov, Strindberg, until the crank, by Robert Pinget, and Behind closed doors, by Sartre. He helps young teams with heart, including those of Jorge Lavelli (for Yvonne, Princess of Burgundy, by Gombrowicz) and Vincent-Jourdheuil ( the wedding at the lower middle class, de Brecht). Two achievements that will be landmark. In 1971, he succeeded Hubert Gignoux, for only one year, at the head of the National Theater of Strasbourg. Without a permanent force, he is not at ease there. Later, he will sometimes become an actor again, under other directions, after his discovery of Indian thought.
In India, he spent a long time, learned yoga, imbibed other breaths in the line of the spiritualist philosophy of Sri Aurobindo (1872-1950), which was the basis of his intense activity as a teacher at the Center de Meetings of Besançon, created in 1978 with Jacques Vingler. Also nurtured by the theses of the biologist and physicist Moshe Feldenkrais on “awareness through movement”, he endlessly joins action with words, during countless courses for professionals and amateurs. Jean-Luc Lagarce, in his Newspaper, pays tribute to him on numerous occasions. François Breur, in a press release, underlines that without Fornier, the Roulotte, the company created in concert with Lagarce, could not have survived. With Jacques Fornier, a conception of public theater as ideally defined after the war is erased, in the noble footsteps of Copeau and Vilar. A pioneer, a man from before by the force of things, a luminous figure, a great transmitter of experiences in the field of artistic ethics, a fundamentally good being turned towards incessant sharing. He said the comedian is “A developer of consciousness and humanity”. This rings true at the present time, when the art of the stage is withering away, under medical pretext, into a “non-essential” product.
He endlessly joins action with words, during countless internships.