CONFERENCE
Organized by the Friends of the Musée de la Basse Navarre on July 8, 2021 at the Espace Bideak / Les Chemins in Saint-Palais


"Conference at Espace Bideak on Thursday 8 July at 8:30 p.m. on the theme of Basque pastoral care, a traditional theater in the Pays de Soule and its immediate surroundings.
The lecturer, Jean-Louis Davant, a retired teacher, is a native of Arrast-Larrebieu in Basse-Soule, between Mauléon and Saint Palais.
Long-term author in Basque and French, he has published since 1957 in various newspapers and reviews on social subjects: agriculture, general economy, social problems, culture, political life ... He has also published five books in French and one thirty other books in Basque, ten of which are pastoral.

Pastoral care is played mainly in the Soule valley, but it sometimes spills over into nearby Béarn and nearby Basse-Navarre, in the former canton of Saint Palais. It is also called in Basque "trajeria", but this is not a total Greek or French tragedy; it's more of a tragicomedy, like Corneille's Cid, with a positive ending. It can also include buffoonish episodes that relax the audience. Pastoral care belongs above all to the epic genre: it tells an epic, centered on the life of a hero or a heroine, more rarely on the history of a community.
It is an amateur theater, performed by volunteers. Each year, it brings together the population of a village or a small group of villages in turn. Most families are mobilizing. A few dozen of their members rehearse and train every weekend for seven to eight months, around a director or two, a choirmaster and a master or mistress of dance. The actors and actresses are people of all trades who act for their pleasure and for the honor of the community, while other volunteers put themselves at their service and that of the public: at the tailoring, in the parking lot, at the entry, at the refreshment stall, etc ...
Around a play, it is also a big village festival, which begins on Sunday morning with a sung mass, and which ends for the young people the next morning, and sometimes the following evening ... four times in Soule, then she is sometimes invited elsewhere, especially when the hero of the play is not Souletin: for example this was the case in 2013 in Bayonne for René Cassin, a native of this city ...
It is an open-air theater and a complete theater, with music, sung dialogues, individual or group songs, liturgical marches inherited from the procession, also ritualistic gestures, Souletine dance and sometimes exotic when the context demands it ...
It is not a realistic theater: it does not show reality directly, it signifies it through a set of means of its own. It is a symbolist theater, and even surrealist. It unfolds in a very special atmosphere of wonder, magic and enchantment ". Text © Friends of the Lower Navarre Museum / video © Séverine Dabadie
 


 



Carnival of Altsasu (Navarre) 05/03/2019: THE LONG NIGHT OF MOMOTXORROS

In the Basque Country, traditions have a long life. During the night of Mardi Gras, in the small town of Altsasu / Alsasua in Castilian (Navarre, Spain) and only in this place, takes place a carnival that goes back to the dawn of time. Reputed barbaric, wild and violent during the dictatorship, Franco has even banned. Since the 80s, it is reborn from the ashes. Before beginning the season of Lent, the inhabitants of the village revive characters from Basque mythology. Essential character of this carnival, half-man, half-bull, the momotxorros smear of blood before putting on, to the ancestral sound of the txalaparta (these boards that one hits in rhythm), their clothes of animals. Decorated with sheep skin, decked with long horns, their faces and bloody arms, they roam the alleys armed with pitchforks, trying to frighten the population with their thunderous and indecent cries. They dance and plot around a huge fire. Then, at the sound of a horn, they return to walk in the city accompanied by the male goat (Aker beltz) and witches (Sorginak) and other mythological characters. On Carnival Day, in this atmosphere that seems unreal, the population is returning to its most ancestral traditions but also to the true meaning of Carnival. This ritual, which appears from another age, is also the occasion of a great feast, the debauch of this night of delirium opens the period of asceticism of Lent, the night gives way to the day, the evil to good.







 





 

Interview with Irene Ménat and Rosette Nérou, the last two net menders of the French coast. Today they still repair the nets of the boats of the port of Saint-Jean-de-Luz / Ciboure. A rare and rich testimony, a sensitive word, two endearing personalities. To discover on the video below made in May 2019 in Ciboure.

Director Séverine Dabadie ©
Zeze Music ©
 


 



 




« CE PAYS EST UN POEME – POEMA BAT DA HERRI HAU »
22/10/2018 PUBLICATION OF THE NEXT BOOK OF PHOTOGRAPHY PUBLISHED IN BILINGUAL AT ELKAR (EUSKARA-FRENCH)

TEXT: ITXARO BORDA
PHOTOGRAPHS: SÉVERINE DABADIE
(In collaboration with Christiane Etchezaharreta)

see the slideshow (20 min)
 


 

A black, E white, I red, U green, O blue: vowels,
I will say someday your latent births ... "
Arthur Rimbaud in "Voyelles"


These words of Arthur Rimbaud are famous, they open his poem "Vowels". Journey on a path of colors and letters, this fulguracy of the giant Ardennes offers here an unexpected prospect to travel the Basque Country. This is the one chosen by the photographer Séverine Dabadie to invite to a rimbaldian walk in the heart of the Basque Country.
The writer Itxaro Borda put on her "soles of wind" to follow her along this initiatory journey, following a poetic wandering.
Both want to embark the reader in the heart of this book and the Basque Country as one would enter a symbolist poem, small touches. Leaving room for imagination, vowels and colors marry into a "long disturbance of all the senses" to reach an intimate, even intimate vision, a way of being "seeing" and touching the essential. Black, white, red, green and blue are the vowels of Rimbaud. Séverine Dabadie's photographs follow these colors in their chromatic language and the purity of Itxaro Borda's texts are like the "drunken boat", letting us discover the Basque Country and its landscapes through words.






Basque shepherds - Euskal Artzainak / Between two worlds - Bi munduren artean
This film by Séverine Dabadie accompanies the release of the book to be published on 1st November 2016 by Elkar (basque language and french).
Landscapes and characters of the book








Film de Séverine Dabadie ©


Film de Séverine Dabadie ©





 


PASTORAL ABOUT JEAN PITRAU: TARDETS ON 24.07.2016
Film de Séverine Dabadie ©

Jean Pitrau (1929-1975) was a farmer and unionist Soule (Basque Country), he advocated for improving the living conditions of farmers and mountain shepherds.
The pastoral is a sung drama organized by villagers on a religious or historical theme.
Pastoral is organized every year by a village from the basque province of Soul. Performances are usually held on the last Sunday of July and the first Sunday of August.
They have their origins in the Middle Ages, carried by the oral tradition, the first documents that mention dating back to 1750. The pastoral may last until half past three and presents dances and songs in Basque language.

Film de Séverine Dabadie ©




 

Film de Séverine Dabadie ©





 

Film de Séverine Dabadie ©




 

Film de Séverine Dabadie ©
 


 




 

UN DOCUMENT D'ARCHIVE SUR LE PAYS BASQUE ET SON HISTOIRE (DE LA TÉLÉVISION FRANÇAISE)
UN FILM DE THIERRY GARDET TEXTE DE JEAN SUHAS
 





The Basques of Santazi (Ste Engrâce - Soule) , Leslie Woodhead, Sandra Ott © Wonderfull document not to be missed
This film follows the lives of over a year, taken during three intervals, of two families of Basque shepherds living in Santazi, a village at the foot of the French Pyrenees. The film is the only Disappearing World film in Western Europe and focuses on continuity and change in the community. The change has arrived in the village of Santazi in recent years along the roads of the introduced roads and improved communication systems with the outside world. The effects extend from the relationship of people with the Catholic religion to hereditary habits. Naturally, television has also entered the homes of these inhabitants. The traditional life of shepherds is also changing in the conflict of interests between those who have formed in the union in an attempt to maintain the vitality of pastoralism and children who took work as linesman for the electricity company. This film shows the rationality behind the choice the villagers are making. This film is recommended for anthropology, sociology, cultural change and European community courses.








 

En anglais : histoire et témoignage des Basques émigrés aux Etats Unis