Georges-Léon-Jules-Marie Feydeau [ʒɔʁʒ fɛ.do] ; 8 December 1862 – 5 June 1921) was a French playwright of the era known as the Belle Époque. He is remembered for his farces, written between 1886 and 1914.(French:
Feydeau was born in Paris to middle-class parents and raised in an artistic and literary environment. From an early age he was fascinated by the theatre, and as a child he wrote plays and organised his schoolfellows into a drama group. In his teens he wrote comic monologues and moved on to writing longer plays. His first full-length comedy, Tailleur pour dames (Ladies' tailor), was well received, but was followed by a string of comparative failures. He gave up writing for a time in the early 1890s and studied the methods of earlier masters of French comedy, particularly Eugène Labiche, Alfred Hennequin and Henri Meilhac. With his technique honed, and sometimes in collaboration with a co-author, he wrote seventeen full-length plays between 1892 and 1914, many of which have become staples of the theatrical repertoire in France and abroad. They include L'Hôtel du libre échange (The Free Exchange Hotel, 1894), La Dame de chez Maxim (The lady from Maxim's, 1899), La Puce à l'oreille (A flea in her ear, 1907) and Occupe-toi d'Amélie! (Look after Amélie, 1908).
The plays of Feydeau are marked by closely observed characters, with whom his audiences could identify, plunged into fast-moving comic plots of mistaken identity, attempted adultery, split-second timing and a precariously happy ending. After the great success they enjoyed in his lifetime they were neglected after his death, until the 1940s and 1950s, when productions by Jean-Louis Barrault and the Comédie-Française led a revival of interest in his works, at first in Paris and subsequently worldwide.
Feydeau's personal life was marred by depression, unsuccessful gambling and divorce. In 1919 his mental condition deteriorated sharply and he spent his final two years in a sanatorium in Paris. He died there in 1921 at the age of fifty-eight.
Feydeau was born at his parents' house in the Rue de Clichy, Paris, on 8 December 1862. –1873), was a financier and a moderately well-known writer, whose first novel Fanny (1858) was a succès de scandale and earned him some notoriety. It was condemned from the pulpit by the Archbishop of Paris, and consequently sold in large numbers and had to be reprinted; Ernest dedicated the new edition to the archbishop.His father, Ernest-Aimé Feydeau (1821
Feydeau's mother was Lodzia Bogaslawa, née Zelewska (1838–1924) known as "Léocadie". When she married Ernest Feydeau in 1861, he was a forty-year-old childless widower and she was twenty-two. She was a famous beauty, and rumours spread that she was the mistress of the Duc de Morny or even the Emperor Napoleon III and that one of them was the father of Georges, her first child. In later life Léocadie commented, "How can anyone be stupid enough to believe that a boy as intelligent as Georges is the son of that idiotic emperor!" She was more equivocal about her relationship with the duke, and Georges later said that people could think Morny his father if they wanted to.
Ernest was a friend of Gustave Flaubert, Théophile Gautier and Alexandre Dumas fils, and Feydeau grew up in a literary and artistic environment. After being taken to the theatre at the age of six or seven he was so enthusiastic that he started to write a play of his own. His father, impressed, told the family's governess to let the boy off tuition that day. Feydeau later said that laziness made him a playwright, once he found he could escape lessons by writing plays.He sought out Henri Meilhac, one of the leading dramatists in Paris, and showed him his latest effort. He recalled Meilhac as saying, "My boy, your play is stupid, but it is theatrical. You will be a man of the theatre".
After the outbreak of the Franco-Prussian War in 1870 the family left Paris for Boulogne-sur-Mer.They returned briefly to Paris in March 1871 and then moved to the spa town of Bad Homburg so that Ernest, whose health was failing, could take the cure. Soon after their return to Paris in October 1871 the nine-year-old Feydeau, who had so far received only private tuition, was sent to a boarding school. As a pupil he was generally indolent, but devoted time and energy to organising an amateur dramatic group and performing. In October 1873 Ernest died and in 1876 Léocadie remarried. Her second husband, nearer her own age than Ernest, was a prominent liberal journalist, Henry Fouquier (1838–1901), with whom Feydeau got on well. In 1879 Feydeau completed his formal education at the Lycée Saint-Louis, and was engaged as a clerk in a law firm. Still stage-struck, he began writing again. Comic monologues were fashionable in society, and he wrote La Petite révoltée (The rebellious young lady), a humorous monologue in verse, of about seven minutes' duration, which attracted favourable attention and was taken up by the publisher Ollendorff.
The first of Feydeau's plays to be staged was a one-act two-hander called Par le fenêtre (Through the window) presented by the Cercle des arts intimes, an amateur society, in June 1882.In his biography of Feydeau Henry Gidel comments that it was not a representative audience, being composed of friends of society members, but it was nonetheless a test of a sort, and the play was enthusiastically received. The typical Feydeau characters and plot were already in evidence: a shy husband, a domineering wife, mistaken identities, confusion and a happy ending. The first professional presentation of a Feydeau play was in January 1883, when Amour et piano was staged at the Théâtre de l'Athénée. It depicts the confusion arising when a young lady receives a young gentleman who she thinks is her new piano teacher; he has come to the wrong house and believes he is calling on a glamorous cocotte. Le Figaro called it "a very witty fantasy, very agreeably interpreted".
After completing his compulsory military service (1883–84) Feydeau was appointed secrétaire général to the Théâtre de la Renaissance,under the management of his friend Fernand Samuel. In that capacity he successfully pressed for the premiere of Henry Becque's La Parisienne (1885), later recognised as one of the masterpieces of French naturalist theatre. In December 1886 the Renaissance presented a three-act comédie by Feydeau, Tailleur pour dames (Tailor for ladies). Les Annales du théâtre et de la musique thought the play insubstantial, but, it enthused, "what gaiety in the dialogue, what good humour, what pleasing words, what fun in this childishness, what unforeseen things in this madness, what comic invention in this imbroglio, which obtained the most outright success one could wish to a beginner!" The critic of Le Figaro said that the piece was not a comedy at all in the conventional sense of the word:
The critic Jules Prével correctly predicted that the young author would struggle to repeat this early triumph: it was not until 1892 that Feydeau had another success to match Tailleur pour dames.He had a series of poor or mediocre runs in the late 1880s with La Lycéenne (a "vaudeville-opérette" with music by Gaston Serpette, 1887), Chat en poche (1888), Les Fiancés de Loches (1888 co-written with Maurice Desvallières), and L'Affaire Edouard (1889).
In 1889 Feydeau married Marie-Anne, the daughter of Carolus-Duran, a prosperous portrait painter. The couple had four children, born between 1890 and 1903.The marriage was ideal to Feydeau in several ways. It was a genuine love-match (though it later went awry); he was an ardent amateur painter, and his father-in-law gave him lessons; and marriage into a well-to-do family relieved Feydeau of some of the financial problems arising from his succession of theatrical failures and heavy losses on the stock exchange.
In 1890 Feydeau took a break from writing and made a study of the works of the leading comic playwrights, particularly Eugène Labiche, Alfred Hennequin and Meilhac.He benefited from his study, and in 1891 wrote two plays that restored his reputation and fortune. He submitted them both to the management of the Théâtre du Palais-Royal. They agreed to stage one of them, Monsieur chasse! , but turned down the second, Champignol malgré lui (another collaboration with Desvallières) as too unbelievable for an audience to accept. After receiving this news from the Palais-Royal, Feydeau met an old friend, Henri Micheau, the owner of the Théâtre des Nouveautés, who insisted on seeing the rejected script and immediately recognised it as a potential winner. Meyer writes, "He was right. Monsieur chasse! was a success, but Champignol was a triumph". When the play opened in November 1892 one critic wrote of:
Another critic said that it had been years since he heard such laughter in a Paris theatre – "I could return to it again and again with pleasure". He predicted that the piece "will have an interminable run",and it ran far into the following year for a total of 434 performances. An English version of the play, called The Other Fellow opened in London in September 1893 and ran for three months. Feydeau's next play, Le Système Ribadier (The Ribadier System, 1892), had a fair run in Paris and was successfully produced in Berlin, and subsequently (under the title His Little Dodge) in London and New York.
In 1894 Feydeau collaborated with Desvallières on La Ruban (The ribbon), a comedy about a man desperately manoeuvring for appointment to the Légion d'honneur.At the same time, after a certain amount of similar manoeuvring on his own account, Feydeau was appointed to the legion, at the early age of thirty-two, joining a small élite of French playwrights to receive the honour, including Dumas, Meilhac, Ludovic Halévy, Victorien Sardou and Becque.
La Ruban ran at the Théâtre de l'Odéon for 45 performances.Feydeau and Desvallières returned to winning form in the same year with L'Hôtel du libre échange (The Free Exchange Hotel). The Annales du théâtre et de la musique, noting that the laughter reverberated inside and out of the auditorium, said that a reviewer could only laugh and applaud rather than criticise. Another critic, predicting a long run, wrote that he and his colleagues would not be needed at the Nouveautés in their professional capacities for a year or so, but would know where to come if they wanted to laugh. The play ran for 371 performances. An English adaptation, The Gay Parisians, was staged in New York in September 1895, and ran for nearly 150 performances; a London version, A Night in Paris, opened in April 1896 and outran the Parisian original, with a total of 531 performances.
During the rest of the 1890s there were two more Feydeau plays, both highly successful. Le Dindon (literally "Turkey" but in French usage signifying "Dupe" or "Fall guy")ran for 275 performances at the Palais-Royale in 1896–97, and at the end of the decade Feydeau had the best run of his career with La Dame de chez Maxim , which played at the Nouveautés from January 1899 to November 1900, a total of 579 performances. The author was used to working with and writing for established farceurs such as Alexandre Germain, who starred in many of his plays from Champignol malgré lui (1892) to On purge bébé! (1910); for La Dame de chez Maxim Feydeau discovered Armande Cassive, whom he moulded into his ideal leading lady for his later works.
The Feydeaus' marriage, happy for its first decade or so, had begun to go wrong by the early years of the 20th century. Feydeau gambled and lost large sums and in 1901 had to sell some of his valuable art collection;his wife was said to have become bitter and spendthrift. Finance became a continual problem. Feydeau never regained the success he had enjoyed with La Dame de chez Maxim. A collaboration in 1902 with the composer Alfred Kaiser on a serious romantic opera, Le Billet de Joséphine, was not a success, closing after 16 performances. Of his first four plays of the 1900s, only La Main passe! (1904) had a substantial run. La Puce à l'oreille (A flea in her ear) (1907) won glowing reviews, and seemed set to become one of the author's biggest box-office successes, but after 86 performances a leading member of the cast, the much loved comic actor Joseph Torin, died suddenly and the play was withdrawn; it was not seen again in Paris until 1952.
In 1908 Occupe-toi d'Amélie! (Look after Amélie) opened at the Nouveautés. The reviewers were enthusiastic; in Le Figaro, Emmanuel Arène said:
In Les Annales du théâtre et de la musique Edmond Stoullig wrote:
The piece ran for 288 performances at the Nouveautés during 1908–09,and at the Théâtre Antoine for 96 performances later in 1909.
In 1909, after a particularly acrimonious quarrel, Feydeau left home and moved into the Hotel Terminus in the Rue Saint-Lazare. He lived there, surrounded by his paintings and books, until 1919.He and Marie-Anne were divorced in 1916 and in 1918, now aged fifty-five, he embarked on an affair with a young dancer, Odette Darthys, whom he cast in the lead in revivals of his plays.
Occupe-toi d'Amélie! was the last full-length play Feydeau wrote on his own. Le Circuit (The road race, 1909) with Francis de Croisset made little impact. Je ne trompe pas mon mari (I don't cheat on my husband, 1914) with René Peter did well at the box office, with 200 performances, but in the view of Feydeau's biographer Leonard Pronko it has signs that "the dramatist had almost reached the end of his brilliant inventiveness".From 1908 Feydeau focused chiefly on a series of one-act plays, which he envisaged as a set to be called Du mariage au divorce (From marriage to divorce). Pronko describes the last of these, Hortense a dit: "je m'en fous!" ("Hortense says 'I don't give a damn'", 1916) "astringently funny … Feydeau's last dazzling gasp".
Feydeau had long been subject to depression, but in mid-1919 his family, alarmed at signs of a severe deterioration in his mental condition, called in medical experts; the diagnosis was dementia caused by tertiary syphilis. III, appointing ministers and issuing invitations to his coronation.The condition was incurable, and Feydeau's sons arranged for him to be admitted to a leading sanatorium in Rueil-Malmaison. He spent his last two years there, imagining himself to be Napoleon
Feydeau sank into a coma and died in the sanatorium at Rueil-Malmaison on 5 June 1921, aged fifty-eight. After a funeral at Sainte-Trinité, Paris, he was buried in the Montmartre Cemetery.
Feydeau wrote more than twenty comic monologues, ... akin to what we would call slapstick farce, where movement was more important than character". Reviewers in the French press in Feydeau's time used both terms –"vaudeville" and "farce" – to label his plays.and provided librettos for the composers Gaston Serpette, Alfred Kaiser and Louis Varney, but his reputation rests on those of his plays known in English as farces. He did not use that term for any of his works: he called them vaudevilles or comédies. The vaudeville, a genre that originated in the middle ages as a satirical song, evolved into a play in verse with music, and by Feydeau's time had split into two branches: opérettes, such as those by Offenbach, and, in the words of the writer Peter Meyer, "the vaudeville itself
Between 1878 and 1916 Feydeau completed twenty full-length and nineteen one-act plays. Eleven of them were written with a co-author, and not all were farcical; Le Ruban (The ribbon, 1894, in collaboration with Maurice Desvallières), is a comedy about a man's strenuous efforts to gain a state honour.and Le Bourgeon (The bud) is a comedy of manners with serious moments. The latter had a respectable run of 92 performances, but Feydeau's greatest successes were in farce. He said that he made so much money from La Dame de chez Maxim that he could afford to take two years' break from writing and devote himself instead to his hobby, painting. That play remains a favourite with French audiences; in English-speaking countries A Flea in Her Ear became the most popular.
The critic S. Beynon John contrasts Feydeau's farce with that of the English theatre of the same period – the latter "cosy and genial", and Feydeau's "sharply subversive". John also contrasts Feydeau with the earlier French farceur, Eugène Labiche: "Labiche's world, though fantasticated, is rooted in ordinary life; Feydeau's is cruel, claustrophobic, and smacks of mania".Discussing his technique, Feydeau said, "When I sit down to write a play I identify those characters who have every reason to avoid each other; and I make it my business to bring them together as soon, and as often, as I can." He also said that to make people laugh "you have to place ordinary people in a dramatic situation and then observe them from a comic angle, but they must never be allowed to say or do anything which is not strictly demanded, first by their character and secondly by the plot". Although in private life he was known for his wit, he carefully avoided it in his plays, holding that witty theatrical dialogue interrupted the action.
The critic W. D. Howarth sums up Feydeau's typical dramatic template as "a nightmare sequence of events in otherwise unremarkable lives".In general the vaudeville or farcical events are confined to the second of three acts:
Howarth observes that "The nightmare quality of Feydeau's middle acts" depends not only on "frenzied comings and goings", but also on mechanical stage accessories such as the revolving bed in La Puce à l'oreille, which conveys its occupants into the adjoining room, seemingly at random.
When Feydeau took a break from writing to study the works of his most successful predecessors, he focused in particular on three playwrights: Labiche, Hennequin and Meilhac.From Labiche he learned the importance of close observation of real-life characters, lending verisimilitude to the most chaotic situations. From Hennequin – who had started as an engineer – Feydeau drew the intricate plotting, described by Pronko as "endless mazes of crisscrossing couples, scurrying from door to door, room to room in every possible and impossible combination". From Meilhac he learned the art of writing polished dialogue, sounding elegant but natural. From these three influences, Feydeau fashioned what Pronko calls "the last great masterpieces of the vaudeville form".
Contemporary opinions of Feydeau covered a wide range. Catulle Mendès wrote, "I continue to deplore the fact that M. Georges Feydeau uses his truly remarkable talent on plays that will be performed four or five hundred times but that will never be read".For some, his late one-act plays are misogynistic; for others, they were his finest achievements, comparable with Strindberg in their naturalism; Feydeau was seen here as a moralist as well as an entertainer. For the authors of Les Annales du théâtre et de la musique, and critics in Le Figaro his farces were what made Feydeau incomparable. Later critics including Gidel, Pronko, Marcel Achard and Kenneth Tynan have judged that in his farces Feydeau was second only to Molière as France's great comic dramatist.
|Title||Feydeau's description||Year||Theatre||Perfs||Title in English||Notes|
|Eglantine d’Amboise||pièce historique en deux actes et 3 tableaux||1873||–||–||The wild rose of Amboise||Juvenilia: not staged in Feydeau's lifetime|
|Tailleur pour dames||comédie en 3 actes||1886||Renaissance||79||Ladies' tailor|
|La Lycéenne||vaudeville-opérette en 3 actes||1887||Nouveautés||20||The schoolgirl||music by Gaston Serpette|
|Chat en poche||vaudeville en 3 actes||1888||Déjazet||36||A pig in a poke|
|Les Fiancés de Loches||vaudeville en 3 actes||1888||Cluny||64||The fiancés from Loches||with Maurice Desvallières|
|L'Affaire Edouard||vaudeville en 3 actes||1889||Variétés||17||The Edward affair|
|Le Mariage de Barillon||vaudeville en 3 actes||1890||Renaissance||26||Barillon's wedding||with Desvallières|
|Monsieur chasse!||comédie en 3 actes||1892||Palais-Royal||114||Monsieur is hunting!|
|Champignol malgré lui||vaudeville en 3 actes||1892||Nouveautés||434||Champignol despite himself||with Desvallières|
|Le Système Ribadier||vaudeville en 3 actes||1892||Palais-Royal||78||The Ribadier system||with Maurice Hennequin|
|Le Ruban||vaudeville en 3 actes||1894||Odéon||45||The ribbon||with Desvallières|
|L'Hôtel du libre échange||vaudeville en 3 actes||1894||Nouveautés||371||Free Exchange Hotel||with Desvallières|
|Un fil à la patte||vaudeville en 3 actes||1894||Palais-Royal||129||Tied by the leg|
|Le Dindon||comédie en 3 actes||1896||Palais-Royal||238||The dupe|
|La Dame de chez Maxim||vaudeville en 3 actes||1899||Nouveautés||579||The lady from Maxim's|
|Le Billet de Joséphine||opéra||1902||Gaîté||16||Josephine's letter||music by Alfred Kaiser|
|La Duchesse des Folies-Bergères||comédie en cinq actes||1902||Nouveautés||82||The duchess of the Folies-Bergères|
|La Main passe!||comédie en quatre actes||1904||Nouveautés||211||The hand goes round|
|L'Âge d'or||comédie musicale en 3 actes et neuf tableaux||1905||Variétés||33||The golden age||with Desvallières; music by Louis Varney|
|Le Bourgeon||comédie de moeurs en 3 actes||1906||Vaudeville||92||The bud|
|La Puce à l'oreille||vaudeville en 3 actes||1907||Variétés||86||A flea in her ear|
|Occupe-toi d'Amélie!||comédie en 3 actes||1908||Nouveautés||288||Look after Amélie|
|Le Circuit||comédie en 3 actes et quatre tableaux||1909||Variétés||44||The road race||with Francis Croisset|
|Je ne trompe pas mon mari||vaudeville en 3 actes||1914||Athénée||200||I don't cheat on my husband||with René Peter|
|Cent millions qui tombent||pièce en 3 actes||–||–||100 million falling||unfinished|
|À qui ma femme?||vaudeville en 3 actes||–||–||Who's my wife?||not staged in Feydeau's lifetime.|
After his death Feydeau's plays were neglected for many years. It was not until the 1940s that major revivals were staged in Paris, after which Feydeau gradually became a staple of the repertory in France and abroad. The Comédie-Française admitted a Feydeau work to its repertoire for the first time in 1941, with a production of the one-act Feu la mère de Madame, directed by Fernand Ledoux, starring Madeleine Renaud and Pierre Bertin.At the Théâtre Marigny in 1948 Renaud starred in the first production of Occupe-toi d'Amélie! since Feydeau's 1908 original, with the company she co-founded with Jean-Louis Barrault. They took the production to Broadway in 1952, and the West End in 1956, playing in the original French and gaining enthusiastic reviews from the New York and London critics. In the meanwhile the Comédie-Française staged its first full-length Feydeau production, Le Dindon (1951). English adaptations had been familiar in Feydeau's day, and in the 1950s new versions began to appear, including Peter Glenville's Hotel Paradiso (1956, from L'Hôtel du libre échange) and Noël Coward's Look After Lulu! (1959, from Occupe-toi d'Amélie!); both were seen in the West End and on Broadway.
The 1960s saw two celebrated productions by Jacques Charon.The first was Un Fil à la patte (1961) for the Comédie-Française, which the company took to London in 1964. This led to an invitation from Laurence Olivier to Charon to direct John Mortimer's adaptation of La Puce à l'oreille as A Flea in Her Ear for the National Theatre (1966). Charon followed this with Mortimer's version of Un Fil à la patte (Cat Among the Pigeons) in the West End (1969). In the 1970s the Comédie-Française added two more Feydeau plays to its repertoire: Mais n'te promène donc pas toute nue! (1971) and La Puce à l'oreille (1978), both directed by Jean-Laurent Cochet. In New York there were productions of Le Dindon (1972 as There's One in Every Marriage), La Main passe (1973 as Chemin de fer), and Monsieur chasse! (1978, as 13 rue de l'amour). In London the National Theatre presented a second Mortimer adaptation, The Lady from Maxim's (1977).
During the last two decades of the twentieth century interest in Feydeau continued. The Comédie-Française presented four more of his plays: La Dame de chez Maxim (1981) directed by Jean-Paul Roussillon, Léonie est en avance (1985) directed by Stuart Seide, Occupe-toi d'Amélie! (1995) directed by Roger Planchon, and Chat en poche (1998) directed by Muriel Mayette. There were numerous Feydeau revivals in theatres in Paris, cities across France, and Brussels, including seven productions of Le Système Ribadierthree of Monsieur chasse!, five of La Dame de chez Maxim, and four of La Puce à l'oreille. In London the National Theatre presented Mortimer's adaptation of L'Hôtel du libre-échange (1984, as A Little Hotel on the Side), which was later played on Broadway. Other English adaptations included Peter Hall and Nicki Frei's versions of Le Dindon (1994, as An Absolute Turkey) and Occupe-toi d'Amélie! (1996, as Mind Millie for Me).
During the first two decades of the 21st century, the Comédie-Française presented seven Feydeau productions: Le Dindon (2002, directed by Lukas Hemleb),Un Fil à la patte (2010 Jérôme Deschamps), Quatre pièces – a quadruple bill of one-act plays and a monologue (Amour et Piano, Un monsieur qui n'aime pas les monologues, Fiancés en herbe and Feu la mère de madame, 2009, Gian Manuel Rau), Le Cercle des castagnettes (monologues, 2012, Alain Françon), Le Système Ribadier (2013, Zabou Breitman), L'Hôtel du libre-échange (2017, Isabelle Nanty) and La Puce à l'oreille (2019, Lilo Baur). The Internet Broadway Database records no Feydeau productions in the 21st century. Among British productions were Frei's 2003 version of Le Système Rebadier (as Where There's a Will) directed by Hall. and Mortimer's A Flea in Her Ear, revived at the Old Vic in 2010, directed by Richard Eyre.
Several of Feydeau's plays have been adapted for the cinema and television. Although he was active well into the early years of film he never wrote for the medium, but within two years of his death in 1921 other writers and directors began to take his plays as the basis for films, of which more than twenty have been made, in several countries and languages. At least fourteen of his plays have been adapted for television.
A Flea in Her Ear is a play by Georges Feydeau written in 1907, at the height of the Belle Époque. The author called it a vaudeville, but in Anglophone countries, where it is the most popular of Feydeau's plays, it is usually described as a farce.
Le Système Ribadier is a farce in three acts by Georges Feydeau and Maurice Hennequin, first performed in November 1892. It depicts a husband's stratagem for escaping the marital home to engage in extramarital intrigue, by hypnotising his wife.
L'Hôtel du Libre échange is a comedy written by the French playwrights Georges Feydeau and Maurice Desvallières in 1894. The play takes place in Paris in the 19th century, and follows two Parisian households and their friends over the course of two days. The play has three acts; acts one and three take place in Monsieur Pinglet's office, while act two takes place in Hôtel du Libre échange, a small Paris hotel. The play has been translated into several other languages.
Alfred Néoclès Hennequin was a Belgian playwright, best known for his farces. Born in Liège, Hennequin was trained there as an engineer, and was employed by the national railway company. In his spare time he wrote plays, and in 1870 had a success in Brussels with his farce Les Trois chapeaux. He moved to Paris in 1871 and became a full-time playwright. Between 1871 and 1886 he wrote a series of comic plays, including Le Procès Veauradieux, Les Dominos roses, Bébé and La Femme à papa. Most of his plays were co-written with collaborators including Alfred Delacour and Albert Millaud and, in his last play, his son Maurice.
Le Procès Veauradieux is an 1875 farce written by Alfred Hennequin and Alfred Delacour. It was one of the major successes of Hennequin's career.
Montrouge, born Louis (Émile) Hesnard, was a comic actor in French musical theatre in the second half of the nineteenth century, as well as a theatre manager in Paris.
Un fil à la patte is a three-act farce by Georges Feydeau. It was first performed in Paris in 1894 and ran for 129 performances. The play has been revived frequently in France, and has been staged in translations in the US and Britain.
La Dame de chez Maxim is a three-act farce by Georges Feydeau, first produced in Paris in 1899. It depicts the complications ensuing when a respectable citizen becomes mixed up with a Moulin Rouge dancer after drinking too much champagne at Maxim's restaurant.
Le Dindon is a three-act farce by Georges Feydeau, first produced in Paris in 1896. It depicts the unsuccessful attempts of the central character – the "dindon" to seduce a married woman, and the chaotic events caused by his fruitless machinations.
Occupe-toi d'Amélie is a three-act farce by Georges Feydeau. It was first produced at the Théâtre des Nouveautés, Paris on 15 March 1908, and ran for 288 performances. After the author's death it was neglected until the 1940s, after which it has been frequently revived. The play was adapted into English in 1958 as Look After Lulu!.
Louise-Armandine Duval, known professionally as Armande Cassive, was a French actress.
Champignol malgré lui is a farce in three acts, by Georges Feydeau and Maurice Desvallières. It was first performed in Paris in 1892–93, and ran for 434 performances.
Monsieur chasse! is a three-act farce by Georges Feydeau, first produced in Paris in 1892. A married man disguises his absences conducting an extramarital affair in Paris as shooting trips in the country, but an evening's chaotic events expose his deception.
Georges Alain Thierry Feydeau was a French actor, director and writer. He was a grandson of the playwright Georges Feydeau, and appeared in several of his grandfather's works, and directed new productions of two of them.
François Victor Arthur Gilles de Saint-Germain, professionally known simply as Saint-Germain, was a French actor, known for his playing of comic parts. In a career lasting from 1852 to 1896 he created leading roles in comedies by writers including Eugène Labiche, Henri Meilhac, Alfred Hennequin and Georges Feydeau.
Bébé (Baby) is a three-act comedy by the playwrights Émile de Najac and Alfred Hennequin, first performed in Paris in 1877. It depicts the amorous affairs of an indulged scion of the aristocracy, encouraged by his eccentric tutor.
Albert Brasseur was the stage name of the French actor Jules Cyrille Albert Dumont.
Jacques François Henry Fouquier, was a French journalist, writer, playwright and politician. He wrote for many newspapers and journals, often pseudonymously but with a style recognisably his own. He was best known as the chief theatre critic of Le Figaro.
Maurice Lamy or M. Lamy was the stage name of the French actor and singer Maurice Castarède. He came from a theatrical family but began as a violinist before becoming an actor. Among the leading roles he created were Aristide in André Messager's Les p'tites Michu (1897), Loustot in Messager's Véronique (1898) and Le Taupier, the wizard, in Charles Lecocq's La Belle au bois dormant (1900).
Joseph Torin, néJoseph Victorin Schiffer, was a French actor of the late 19th and early 20th centuries. He was particularly known for his comic roles in plays by Georges Feydeau, Maurice Hennequin, Georges Duval, Gaston Arman de Caillavet, Robert de Flers and other contemporary playwrights.