A Rendezvous With Sharifah Amani, The Special Guest Of Le French Festival
Want to brush up on your painting skills whilts sipping on café a la French style? Or do you fancy a stroll down the streets of Paris in the company of a stage actor?
All that can happen at Le French Festival 2019, a presentation of the progressive French culture and arts, boasting a gathering of all things from culinary experience, visual arts, performance and cinematography. The feté will be hosted in Kuala Lumpur, Penang, Johor Bahru and Kota Kinabalu and is open for all age groups.
Having worked in foreign settings such as Japan for the theatre "Beautiful Water" the previous year, it's only fitting that Sharifah Amani is invited as the festival's special guest. She speaks about her admiration of the French's promotion of their arts and her favourite French movie.
1/5 What are you most excited about Le French Festival 2019?
The animated movie, "Funan" that highlights the Khmer Rouge’s administration. It’s something that happened when we were around and the world ignored it. It’s weird how the genocide was happening and we couldn’t do anything about it. I think one of the flairs that the French has is telling a story in the most different and ironic ways even if it is morbid and it’s something that I’m looking forward to.
2/5 What's your favourite animated movie?
"Frozen" is definitely my all-time favourite but I’m also a fan of Disney movies from the 90’s like "Fern Gulley" and "Land Before Time". To see how animation can manipulate the world and stretch the limits, I really enjoy it.
3/5 What will attract Malaysians to Le French Festival?
I think we should treat it like a month of observing the French culture. It’s not just the films, music and theatre because there’s also a visual art exhibition like the reinterpretation of the Mona Lisa by Argadol which was so beautiful. It’s a great opportunity to immerse in the culture like gastronomy and see some art and dance like the "ExiT" hip-hop dance show happening on April 19. And the admittance is free!
I’m quite envious of the French because their art has been flowing within them and they’re able to do this festival halfway across the world.
4/5 Do you have a favourite French movie?
"Amélie", of course. And "La Vie en rose". When I saw Marion Cotillard’s performance in that movie, I wanted to be able to do a similar performance but of Siput Sarawak, our very own prima donna. She was illiterate and people had to read her scripts to her. She was the fiercest woman on a film set. I feel like we don’t know our past Malaysian artists so it would be an honour to portray her.
5/5 How was the experience of working with Japanese director Isao Yukisada for the short film, "Pigeon" back in 2017?
Effortless. It’s proven that people of the arts do speak the same language when you love and are passionate about the same things. I don’t know how it works! Maybe it’s a combination of expression, body language or the fact that he knows some words in English and I know some Japanese or it’s ‘language’ used for the stage and films as well. For some reason, we tend to understand each other.
It's proven that people of the arts do speak the same language when you are passionate about the same things.