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The University of Southampton
FilmPart of Humanities

Postgraduate screenings: Les parapluies de Cherbourg (The Umbrellas of Cherbourg) Event

Film reel
11 May 2011
Seminar Room 1095, Avenue Campus

For more information regarding this event, please email Victoria Kearley at .

Event details

(Jacques Demy, France, 1964) Introduced by Beth Carrol

Les Parapluies de Cherbourg is a French, entirely sung, operetta directed by the often overlooked member of the French New Wave Jacques Demy. The film is a fine example of hyper-realism and Demy successfully blends colourful sentimentality with themes of alcoholism, teenage pregnancy and war. It tells the story of a young couple separated by war and whose lives travel in different locations as a result. The composer Michel Legrand provides music that works in a brilliant synthesis with Demy’s lyrics to make the mundane seem exceptional. Due to the continuous flow of music, the traditional move from a non-musical space to a musical number is complicated. Beth Carrol's research is interested in the space of musical numbers and what drives them. Les Parapluies de Cherbourg offers an opportunity to analyse how the relationship between image and sound changes during the transition from recitative and aria; from ordinary sung speech to self-contained song. How this sub-genre relates to the wider musical genre is important for understanding its complexities; utilising theories prevalent in the study of opera may be one way of achieving this.

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