Ginette Noiseux

Ginette Noiseux, set and costume designer, theatre artistic director and general manager (b at Montréal 23 January 1958).
Ginette Noiseux, set and costume designer, theatre artistic director and general manager (b at Montréal 23 January 1958).

Noiseux, Ginette

Ginette Noiseux, set and costume designer, theatre artistic director and general manager (b at Montréal 23 January 1958). Ginette Noiseux intended on a scientific career, but switched to theatre and joined the National Theatre School of Canada's set and costume design program, where she graduated in 1980 with honorable mention.

After leaving school, she apprenticed as an assistant to François BARBEAU, an undisputed master in the field of costume design. From the very beginning of her career she worked with major Quebec theatre companies and could easily have carved out a niche commensurate with her talent in this institutional setting. However, her non-conformist personality led her to new forms of expression. In the fall of 1981, she offered her services as a set designer to Pol Pelletier for La Terre est trop courte, Violette Leduc by Jovette Marchessault at the Théâtre Expérimental Des Femmes (TEF).

This collective, founded in 1979 with the goal of promoting the differences, originality and artistic pursuits of feminine creators, invited her to be part of its management core. In 1983 this consisted of a threesome: an author, an administrator and an artistic director (Noiseux). Beginning in 1985, she broadened the theatre's mandate by welcoming projects from authors and poets, integrating them with dance and the visual and performing arts. One example was La Soirée des Murmures which, at the Festival de Théâtre des Amériques, presented the subject of eroticism . The TEF was renamed as Espace Go, thus omitting the feminist association in its name while remaining faithful to the collective's three main underlying principles: to be a theatre of ideas, a unique tool for (male and female) creators most involved in the stakes of modernity, and to have a strong artistic management.

There followed several works that received much media coverage and were very successful. In 1987 Noiseux programmed a production of Shakespeare's The Tempest with an entirely female cast, earning le Grand Prix du Conseil des Arts de la Communauté Urbaine de Montréal. In 1989, at the chapel of the Grand Séminaire de Montréal, she produced a noteworthy L'Annonce faite à Marie by Paul Claudel. Although male actors had worked there for a few years, in 1990 she opened the creative teams to men and initiated a new production cycle: work by a Québecois author, one by a foreign contemporary author, and the rediscovery of a work from the repertoire.

This direction for Espace Go was honoured in 1991 by the Prix Spécial de l'Association Québécoise des Critiques de Théâtre. During this same year, a project for the construction of a theatre space that would respond to the concerns of contemporary authors emerged. A versatile studio-theatre, with 280 seats and for all kinds of performances, was inaugurated on 10 January, 1995. It was awarded the Prix d'Excellence catégorie institutionnelle by the Order of Quebec Architects.

But the costume designer did not bow to the artistic director. After leaving school, Noiseux continued to do the costumes for some 60 productions including for Espace Go, Théâtre de Quatre Sous, Théâtre Expérimental de Montréal, the NATIONAL ARTS CENTRE, l'Opéra de Montréal and THÉÂTRE DU NOUVEAU MONDE. For Les Guerriers by Michel Garneau (1996-97 season), and Eugene Ionesco's Le Roi se meurt (1998-99 season), both staged by René-Daniel DUBOIS at Espace Go, she was a finalist at la Soirée des Masques de l'Académie québécoise du Théâtre. In 1996, this theatrical institution awarded Espace Go two masks for best production - Montréal and le Prix du Public.

Three decorations have been awarded for her artistic direction: Chevalier de l'Ordre des Arts et des Lettres de France (2001), le prix Femme de mérite catégorie Arts et Culture (2002) and the 20th Grand Prix du Conseil des Arts de Montréal (2004), highlighting the outstanding quality of this theatre's 25th season.