Germain Houde. Actor. (Petit Saguenay QC, 14 December 1952 - ) With a career spanning continuously more than 30 years on stage and screen, this excellent actor has created exciting characters that have had strong impact on the imaginations of his broad audience. From village idiot to stalwart leading man, from tormented soul to family patriarch and, later, soft-hearted grandfather, he has touched all hearts and expressed every emotion. A true artisan and demanding, technical perfectionist, Germain Houde practises his craft with discipline and generosity.
The year following his graduation from the Conservatoire d'art dramatique de Québec (1976), Germain Houde made his acting debut at the Théâtre du Trident under the direction of Guillermo de Andrea in a notable production of Bertolt Brecht's L'Opéra de Quat'Sous (The Threepenny Opera). He appeared regularly on that stage through the mid-1980s in works including Le Temps d'une vie and La Complainte des hivers rouges by Roland Lepage (1978), La Locandiera by Goldoni (1978), La Cuisine by Wesker (1979), Coup de sang by Jean Daigle (1981), Shakespeare's Macbeth and Miller's Les Sorcières de Salem (The Crucible) (1983) as well as in Tennessee Williams' Un tramway nommé Désir (A Streetcar Named Desire ) (1984), in which he played the troubled Stanley Kowalski. His performance in the lead role in John Merrick's L'Homme éléphant (The Elephant Man) (1982, a TNM/CNA/Trident coproduction), also directed by de Andrea, particularly impressed Montreal theatre-goers.
While establishing his stage presence, Germain Houde also successfully took on two successive roles, in 1979 and 1980, that would be well-regarded in Quebec cinema: the rapist in Mourir à tue-tête by Anne-Claire POIRIER and "Ti-Guy" in Les Bons Débarras by Francis MANKIEWICZ, the latter earning him a GENIE AWARD; his dark interpretations of these rough, brutish characters haunted by violence - whether internal or external - remain unforgettable. In the theatre, in 1980, Germain Houde created a one-man show that he took on the road for four years in Quebec and France in the form of Jean-Pierre Bergeron's Macho macho man, in which he brought to life a "fake toughie" homosexual trapped in stereotypes, for which he won the Prix Paul-Hébert.
The 1990s saw Germain Houde consolidate his reputation, successfully taking on a number of lead roles in works such as Les Palmes de M. Schultz (1991, Juste pour rire), directed by Denise FILIATRAULT; Pierre ou la Consolation de Marie LABERGE (1992, Café de la Place), directed by Martine Beaulne; and David Mamet's Oleanna (1994, THÉÂTRE DE QUAT'SOUS), directed by Micheline LANCTÔT. Houde won the "Masque du meilleur interprète masculin," a lead actor award, for his role in La Grande Magia (1998, Compagnie Jean-Duceppe), under the direction of Serge Denoncourt, who also directed him in Chekhov's La Cerisaie (The Cherry Orchard) (1999, THÉÂTRE DU NOUVEAU MONDE) and Le Peintre des madones ou la naissance d'un tableau by Michel Marc BOUCHARD (2004, ESPACE GO). He has since also played in Bonbons assortis by Michel TREMBLAY (2006, THÉÂTRE DU RIDEAU VERT) and a production of Peter Shaffer's Equus (2008, Compagnie Jean-Duceppe). To date he has appeared in 45 theatrical productions.
In addition to cinematic roles in nearly two dozen films, including Un zoo la nuit - for which he took home a Genie Award - Mademoiselle C., Le Survenant, Saint-Martyr-des-Damnés and La Ligne brisée, Germain Houde has also become a well-known actor on television, lending his talents to series such as Les Filles de Caleb - for which he won a PRIX GÉMEAUX - Le Volcan tranquille, Omertà, Tabou - which brought him a second Gémeaux - Temps dur, Les Invincibles, La Promesse and René-Lévesque II, in which he played a larger-than-life Jacques Parizeau.