Canadian Francophonie | Let’s be friends in our language

“Foreigners are rarely as foreign as we think,” said Gabrielle Roy, a figure who encourages us to come together and exchange as Quebecers and Franco-Canadians. Today, March 22, his birthday, is Quebec Day of the Canadian Francophonie.


I want to celebrate with you, as an artist from the Northwest Territories, the contribution and the undeniable strength of the different French-speaking communities in Canada, so that we can be friends who communicate in French, just like Gabrielle Roy and the people she wrote letters to.

Gabrielle Roy was born in Manitoba and lived in Quebec and Europe. It is part of the cultural ecosystem that pushed me to write, in French in the Canadian North and West, where the majority of the population cannot read me. It’s an irrational choice that comes from the heart and that gives me both roots and wings.

In our French-speaking minority communities, we succeed in creating our works and taking them on a journey while coping with several challenges.

Quebec is an important distribution hub for us and could be even more so. Like Gabrielle Roy, we can build other bridges together. It has inspired several contemporary interregional collaborations including Distress and enchantment by Marie-Thérèse Fortin and Olivier Kemeid, This summer that sang by Marie-Ève ​​Fontaine and The world of Gabrielle Roy (tou.tv): we have structures and ways of working that benefit from being adopted on a larger scale. What could result from increased mobility of works, artists and arts students between Quebec and the Canadian Francophonie, in both directions?

Focus on cultural mobility

Throughout my own journey, I have tried to focus on cultural mobility to enrich and perpetuate my French-speaking communities. I lived in Yellowknife, Winnipeg and Montreal, like the migratory trajectory of Gabrielle Roy. In 2014, I became a young ambassador of the Francophonie of the Americas of the Center of the Francophonie of the Americas, an honor that will never leave me wherever I am. The very existence of this network illustrates the fact that Francophones all need each other.

During my independent residency in playwriting at the National Theater School in Montreal, just as I immersed myself in a Quebec social and geographical reality, my peers became interested in my own Francophonie and the territories from which I come.

It is exactly this kind of human-to-human encounters that are the basis of the webs of solidarity that cross the landscapes of our language.

Today, my artistic collaborations and friendships born thanks to French are articulated not only in Canada, but also internationally.

The Francophonie as a movement has the unique capacity to dissolve the boundaries between human beings. Let’s speak our language, the language of Gabrielle Roy. Quebecers, make friends, colleagues, families and Franco-Canadian cultural landmarks. Come and chat with us and our creations.


reference: www.lapresse.ca

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