Photo du spectacle Nouss étions mousquetaires

« We were musketeers » theater play

«Mordiou !

Affiche du spectacle Nous étions mousquetaires de la compagnie les Lanternes public

The captain d’Artagnan recruits new musketeers.

Do you like adventure?

To live by the rules of war, honor and the poet?

Three famous Musketeers will be there to teach you the handling of swords and muskets, courage and many more…

And what other way to train yourself than by telling you their story? But beware, it will be from their own point of view, and we will learn things that D’Artagnan would have liked to hide.

And do not forget 

All for one, one for all ! »

The play is inspired by the book « Vingt ans après », by Alexandre Dumas where we follow the characters, as the title suggests, twenty years after « The Three Musketeers ». It is treated with humor and with a playful reach where the public can become an actor in the play.

The indications which were given to me were: three costumes (Athos, Porthos, Aramis + a cape for the role of Milady) of historical evocation *, in the 1650s. They had to allow the actors to move because it would be a show with a lot of fencing, so be « flexible » but solid, especially since the show was scheduled for a three-year tour. I also respected the personal characteristics of the characters in the choice the colors, fabrics and cuts.

The director and I had similar ideas on the aesthetics of the play, so it was quite easy to choose shapes and fabrics, and I was able to enjoy a great freedom of creation thanks to this mutual trust.

Illustration de « Les Trois Mousquetaires » des éditions Appleton – 1894.
Illustration de « Les Trois Mousquetaires » des éditions Appleton – 1894.

After iconographic and historical researches, crossed from several sources, I found that the men in 1650 wore (excluding underwear):

  • a shirt that could be seen
  • a doublet
  • loose pants that could “stick” in the boots or be tightened below the knee with a decorative ribbon.
  • cuffed boots or waders.

We chose with the director to give them a common element in order to recall their bond; and it was decided that it would be blue capes, reminiscent of the royalty that united them and the color of their musketeers gown.

I also came across these illustrations of mrharp, which I think a bit fanciful for the reconstruction, but still consistent so I was inspired by it.

(Tip) The pants being particularly wide…

Essayage pantalon

… I decided to make the same model for the three actors, being of almost similar corpulence, and to put an elastic at the waist instead of adjusting the garment with a belt (I remind that we are here in an inspiration history to be adapted to the theater). In this way, the pants could be used by different actors if the actors changed, or for another play. It also avoided too much fitting issues since I worked remotely. Their particularity therefore lay in the fabric chosen.

Charles Ier d’Angleterre par Daniel Mytens, 1631
Charles Ier d’Angleterre par Daniel Mytens, 1631

Regarding doublets, their particularities lay in their cuts as well as the choice of materials. Porthos, a proud man who likes to show off, would therefore be dressed in red decorated with gold, with his shirt visible (at the time, we allowed the shirt to protrude, considered as an undergarment, in order to show its wealth because it could be sewn in beautiful materials such as silk), while Aramis is a rather fine, subtle and flirtatious character.

I admit that I was a bit out of bounds by offering an Aramis with the us of (fake) leather, looking rather like the D’Artagnan from the illustrations above, but the result pleased a lot and therefore remained so. Athos, meanwhile, is a worthy nobleman, and yet unadorned, so I decided to dedicate the most socially important shape to him, which is found in many paintings representing influential people (example Charles I by Daniel Mytens in 1631 on the left) with sleeves with a lot of “flat holes” and which therefore show the shirt a lot.

This painting is of course too old compared to the time of the play, but it is a deliberate choice: Athos, is a count who remains discreet and humble and does not seek to attract attention. As a result, he has little interest in fashion and would keep a style he likes without wanting to please others. Having lost part of his fortune, he will be sparsely decorated, sober, only a silver braid, to emphasize his condition without drowning it in frills, which would suit neither his discreet personality nor his fortune.

Photographie des guêtres sur scène
Picture by Igor Bartz

Finally, we decided to make overshoes (gaiters) in imitation leather to imitate a cuffed boot.

Quelques photos en cours de réalisation :

Theater company : Les Lanternes Public
Director : Valentin Pierquet
Athos : Léo Schalck
Porthos : Mathias Marmeuse puis Robinson Courtois
Aramis : Loïc Bonhomme

* Il est important de souligner le mot « évocation », car il ne s’agit pas de reconstitution. La reconstitution nécessite des recherches plus poussées que celles que j’ai faites (qui étaient déjà avancées) ainsi que des techniques de réalisation et surtout des matières plus spécifiques.

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