Jérôme Savary's current show at the Opéra Comique in Paris, "A la recherche de Joséphine - à La Nouvelle-Orléans" (Looking for Joséphine - New Orleans), celebrates the ubiquitous allure of Josephine Baker, the evolution of jazz as an inherently African American art form, and commemorates the devastation of Hurricane Katrina into one big, raunchy fable.
Jérôme Savary’s previous work as a stage director should be familiar to opera fans, as this master of mise-en-scène was responsible for Muti's 1991 Attila at Teatro alla Scala with Ramey and Studer, as well as the Théâtre Antique's Carmen from 2004 with Roberto Alagna and Béatrice Uria-Monzon.
Jérôme Savary's new show on Baker, running until January 14, 2007, stars Nicolle Rochelle, or better known quite ambitiously on myspace as, "Nicolle Rochelle -AKA- 'La Nouvelle Josephine'" (let’s hope her myspace webpage design is supposed to be “ironic”). Apparently girl got it together, as a review of a dance recital from last year stated, "Rochelle stood out more for her heavy bangs and bright-red hair than for her dancing", and her last credits I found online were from Chappelle’s Show.
Although I can't read French language very well, (gazes long and hard in the direction adelynlee) it's worth the ticket, as the show includes reenactments of Baker's famous Danse Sauvage from La Revue Nègre. With bananas, feathers, and Eiffel Tower pasties (NSFW), of course. Viva La Baker!
(You can find three images from the current production on the Opera Chic flickr photostream here.)