Sunday, 24 April 2016

Films and more films this week!

Alliance Française de Bath is running its cineclub next Friday. They are showing Quai d'Orsay by Bertrand Tavernier with Thierry Lhermite as Alexandre Taillard de Worms, French minister of Foreign Affairs ( ministre des Affaires Etrangères), who tends to create chaos around him. Raphaël Personnaz plays Arthur, who has just graduated from the prestigious National School of Administration ( l'ENA, l'Ecole Nationale d'Administration). Arthur has now joined the ministry of Foreign Affairs as a speech writer, he has to cope with unhelpful, ambitious colleagues ( des collègues ambitieux et peu serviables) and his boss, Thierry Lhermite who keeps changing his mind! ( qui change d'avis constamment).
A lively and enjoyable comedy: For more info... 

The Watershed in Bristol is showing Dheepan for another week. It is a drama by French film director Jacques Audiard ( Un prophète; De rouille et d'os). Dheepan is a young Sri Lankan Tamil warrior ( un guerrier tamil) who flees his war ravaged country (qui fuit son pays ravagé par la guerre) by pretending to be the husband and the father of two other refugees. The three of them arrive in France. This film depicts the lives of immigrants as well as being a thriller.
It won La Palme d'Or in Cannes in 2015.

Students studying French at Alliance Française de Bristol et Bath can buy tickets for any French films showing at the Watershed at a reduced rate thanks to a password which they can get from their French tutor.
Don't miss our French intensive courses for Bath and Bristol starting soon, for more info for Bath and Bristol ...

Sunday, 17 April 2016

Did you know we're having a talk with photos on la Provence, in Bristol, next Saturday?

Joël Binet will take us through a journey in Provence discovering how writers, painters, musicians and singers were inspired by this beautiful region.
The list is long with Nîmes born Alphonse Daudet and Les lettres de mon moulin, which he actually wrote in Clamart, a suburb South West of Paris, with Frédéric Mistral who said " le provençal est la première langue littéraire de l'Europe civilisée." ( Provençal is the first literary language of civilised Europe). We can't not mention Jean Giono and his poetical novels about Provençal peasants like Provence nor forget Marcel Pagnol with his plays and novels, La femme du boulanger, Le château de ma mère and so many more.
We have to take a trip to St Paul de Vence where Matisse, Chagall, Prévert, Montand, Signoret and lots of others  spent so  much time.

Of course we can't leave out Picasso who bought le château de Vauvenargues in 1958  where he died in 1973:

And Bécaud with his famous song Les marchés de Provence, which you can listen to:

 There are still some places for the talk on Saturday, do come along: for more info...

Sunday, 10 April 2016

Did you know that the next French drama workshops are starting in Bristol soon?

Have you been coming to our own French drama shows over the last few years? If not, you might have missed the time Gérard Depardieu was tried ( a été traduit devant un tribunal) to see whether he could remain French,

or the time Antoine and Cléopâtre disclosed ( ont exposé) their marital problems to the public!
We have had celebrities such as Géneral de Gaulle talking to us about his love of cheese ( son amour du fromage), or Marie Curie sharing her recipe ( qui a partagé sa recette)  for radioactive jelly (please don’t try this at home).

More recently, Johnny Hallyday gave a great-if short-performance and Edith Piaf rose from her ashes ( est renée de ses cendres). Hercule Poirot and Sherlock had an argument about bribes ( se sont disputés au sujet des pots-de- vin), and inspecteur Gadget saved the day ( a sauvé la situation).

It is always fun for our students to let their creative juices flow in French, and a great way to practise the language.

Join the fun, for more info...

You can also watch a  whole lot of videos of the French drama shows on the Alliance Française de Bristol et Bath Youtube page, for more info...

Sunday, 3 April 2016

Friday was the 1st April, le jour des poissons d'avril!

Why is 1st April, April's fools day?
In France we are not absolutely sure as there are several explanations but the most popular one takes it back to the 16th century when le roi Charles IX decided that the year should not start on 1st April anymore but on 1st January and presents would be given then. To make it confusing some people carried on giving presents on 1st April, little by little these presents became jokes ( des blagues) or tricks ( des canulars).
Why Poisson d'avril?
The 1st April often came at the end of lent when presents of food were given, as Christians could not eat meat during lent, fish were offered. As the years went by, pretend fish became fashionable to trick people.
So now, when a joke is made on 1st April, we say Poisson d'avril to the person who was tricked. We also try to stick a paper fish in people 's back without them noticing:

La RATP, la régie autonome des transports parisiens ( buses, tube and RER in Paris) changed the names of 13 metro stations last Friday for their Poisson d'avril, here they are:
Poisson d'avril du métro : les explications de la RATP

"Pyrénées" devient "Alpes" : "Dans un souci d'équilibre dans la promotion des chaines de montagne française , et après  plus de 80 ans de promotion des Pyrénées, ouverture aujourd'hui de la station Alpes sur la ligne 11".

"Alexandre Dumas" devient "Les Trois Mousquetaires", "en raison de problèmes de droits d'auteur".

"Télégraphe" devient "#Tweet", "dans un souci de modernisation, et pour appuyer sa volonté d'être leader de la ville intelligente"

"Château d'Eau" devient "Château de sable", "pour  prolonger Paris-Plage toute l'année".

"Cadet" devient "Rousselle", "afin d'évoquer l'univers de l'enfance".

"Crimée" devient "Châtiment", "en hommage au roman de Fiodor Dostoïevski".

"Monceau" devient "Ma pelle" : "Pour rendre hommage à nos ingénieurs. En effet, il s'agit de la seule creusée à la pelle".

"Saint-Jacques" devient "Coquille", "pour  soutenir la filière de la pêche".

"Parmentier" devient "Pomme de Terre", "dans un souci de clarté et de simplification".

"Opéra" devient "Apéro" : "Pour une ville plus festive, la station Opéra se nomme désormais Apéro #Parisestunefête".

"Quatre septembre" devient "1er avril" : "Pour coller au mieux à l'actu, la station Quatre Septembre changera de nom chaque jour".

"Joinville-le-Pont" devient "Joinville-le-Pont Pon ! Pon !", afin de rendre hommage à  2017 à Bourvil et à sa chanson de 1951.

Just to let you know, we still have places in our French drama workshops starting on Tuesday, 19th April, do join! For more info...