JUDITH / The Parted Body

Photos par Marie Pétry

Judith / The Parted Body by Howard Barker, translated by Jean-Michel Déprats (éditions Théâtrales)

New public presentation, on May 3d, 2023, 8:30 PM, at the Château of the Grille in CHINON (37360), FRANCE

Reservations : helloasso.com/associations/omnivion/evenements/judith-le-corps-separe-chateau-de-la-grille


Morsures Collective was created in order to perform a play by contemporary English writer Howard Barker: “Judith / The Parted Body”. This author is being played and translated all over the world. The work re-examines the biblical form of Judith. This story of the beautiful widow who saves her country, Israel, by beheading Holofernes, a charismatic general of the Assyrian armies of Nebuchadnezzar.
Judith has been the subject of numerous creations in painting, music, literature and theater. In this version, Howard Barker removes the story from its historical and religious context.
Two women, Judith and her maid, enter the general’s tent to kill him, under the pretext of prostitution, the day before the battle against the Hebrews. All the action takes place at night, a few hours before dawn, when the attack by the general’s troops would almost certainly destroy their country. It is the dancer and choreographer Dimitris Tsiapkinis who will play this peculiar character, very far from the stereotype of the bloodthirsty general. Here he is rather melancholic, philosophizes death, and speaks with such insight about the violence of the military profession that Judith is seduced (or pretends to be seduced) by him, to the point where she hesitates to commit the murder that would make her a hero. Desire (or the game of desire) or perhaps love (or the game of love) is played between them, under the gaze of the maid whose pseudonym is the Ideologist. Always present in the paintings, she is the one who will help Judith to complete the act that the nation and the history of Israel expect from her. She is constantly in action and commenting on the action, witnessing the turmoil and desire that develops between Judith and the charismatic general.
After the beheading of Holofernes by Judith, Barker writes a scene between the two women where Judith will give a completely unexpected image of herself… The purpose of the Morsures Collective is not to give a new interpretation of Judith, but to freely dive into the scenario of Barker that offers its actors a fascinating script to play.

Performers :

CATHERINE  JACOUX, actor/director


DIMITRI TSIAPKINIS, dancer-choreographer


Sound Composition : Antoine Layère

Stage mangement / Lights : Marine Pourquié

Length : 70 min




With the support of:

National Center of Drama of Tours, (solidairy residencies), the Municipality of Nikiti, Stelios Kostikas and Michael Moustakas, Le Petit Morier, Omnivion, Obstinatio Musicae, La Grange Babel / Jean Vindras, Ville de Saint-Cyr-sur-Loire, Théâtre Vaugarni, La Charpente, Espace Malraux, Espace Culturel Les Quatre Vents.


Previous residency shows :

  • June 14th 2022, at Espace Malraux, 37300 Joué-lès-Tours, France
  • May 8th 2022, at the Vaugarni Theater, 37260 Pont-de-Ruan, France
  • January 7th, 2022 at 8:30 pm, at the Regard du Cygne, 210 Rue de Belleville, 75020 Paris, France
  • December 9th, 2021 at 8 pm, at the Salle Rabelais, Old City Hall, 37540 Saint-Cyr-sur-Loire, France.
  • September 18-19, 2021 at the Grange Babel, 1 rue Jean Jaurès, 37700 Saint-Pierre-des-Corps, France.
  • August 13th, at the Ethnographic Museum of Nikiti, Central Macedonia, Greece.
  • March 24th 2021, at the Olympia, Centre Dramatique National de Tours, 37000 Tours, France
  • Septembre 23d, 2022, at Espace Culturel Les Quatre Vents, les Blourdiers, Rouziers (37360), France