Orgon is a wealthy bourgeois, he takes in Tartuffe, how is only after the fortune of his host… Is Tartuffe an impostor? Yes, of course he is. He pretends to be something he is not: a devotee. Nevertheless, his deception has the virtue of exposing the secret tensions and desires that lurk in Orgon's family. On closer inspection, however, the family has collapsed into the ruins of its past.
Tartuffe then infiltrates this household on the verge of explosion. He is a beggar, a miserable man who lives from day to day, collecting alms from church to church. A life of survival. Tartuffe is given the role of saviour, of devotee, by Orgon. A good actor, he plays this role for the money and for a better life in which he can wash at least once a week and wear clean clothes. Orgon finds in him a friend, a confidant, with whom he can share his worries and difficulties. Tartuffe turns out to be the perfect carer, friend and spiritual teacher. To seal this unique bond, Orgon decides to make Tartuffe his sole heir. The bomb explodes…
Ivo van Hove has chosen a text that is not the five-act version written by Molière in 1669 and usually staged. It is the reconstitution of a lost version of the play. This three-act “Tartuffe”, whose title is “Le Tartuffe ou l’Hypocrite”, was indeed censored when first shown to Louis XIV in 1664.
He is a major figure on the international theatre scene. He has produced around 100 shows. In three decades, the current artistic director of the Toneelgroep, whose field of exploration embraces the world of theatre, cinema and opera, has covered a wide repertoire of pieces, from Sophocle to Shakespeare, Molière, Tony Kushner, Arthur Miller, Ibsen, Louis Couperus or Hanya Yanagihara. He directed operas by Strauss, Moussorgski, Mozart, Kurt Weill, Bernstein. The show “Tartuffe or the Hypocrite” will be his third collaboration with Comédie Française.