René Richard Cyr

René Richard Cyr, actor, playwright, stage director, film producer, TV host (b at Montréal 27 Sep 1958). A highly talented jack-of-all-trades, René Richard Cyr made his mark as an actor on stage and screen thanks to roles that made him a popular star.

Cyr, René Richard

René Richard Cyr, actor, playwright, stage director, film producer, TV host (b at Montréal 27 Sep 1958). A highly talented jack-of-all-trades, René Richard Cyr made his mark as an actor on stage and screen thanks to roles that made him a popular star. He also became famous as a stage director, with more than 70 theatrical productions, several operas, and numerous variety shows on stage and television to his career credit. Over the past 3 decades, he has received many awards and distinctions.

A native of Montréal's modest "Faubourg à m'lasse" neighbourhood, René Richard Cyr remains associated with the lives of members of the working class, whom he portrays so well and presents on stage with such sensitivity. A performance graduate of the NATIONAL THEATRE SCHOOL OF CANADA, class of 1980, René Richard Cyr threw himself into theatre as a writer, actor and director, particularly with Théâtre Petit à Petit (PàP), which he co-directed with Claude Poissant from 1981 to 1998. Cyr performed in about 10 plays there, including Tournez la plage (1982); Artur (1982); Où est-ce qu'elle est ma gang? (1982); Girafes, which he wrote and directed (1983); Les cauchemars du grand monde (1984); Bain public (1986); and Michel Marc BOUCHARD's enormous hit Les Feluettes (1987). He also directed the plays Sortie de secours (1984), L'éveil du printemps (1989), La magnifique aventure de Denis St-Onge (1988), and other works that he co-wrote, including L'an de grâce (1992), and L'Apprentissage des Marais (1994). Théâtre Petit à Petit was a fertile breeding ground that allowed him to tackle various genres, including those for young audiences.

René Richard Cyr did not limit himself to the company he co-directed. He appeared on stage in the 80s and 90s at the THÉÂTRE DE QUAT'SOUS in Hamlet and Le Décaméron (dir. Alexandre Hausvater) and in Hosanna (dir. Lorraine Pintal), and at the THÉÂTRE DU NOUVEAU MONDE in La Charge de l'orignal épormyable (dir. André Brassard). Yves Desgagnés, director of Les Bas-Fonds, cast him in Sainte Jeanne with the Compagnie Jean DUCEPPE. Then, relinquishing acting to some degree, René Richard Cyr mapped out his route as a director with several hits: Aurore l'enfant martyre (1984), Bonjour, là, bonjour (1987), Les Bonnes (1994), and Les Muses orphelines (1994). Motel Hélène (1997) introduced author Serge Boucher, whose other works Cyr also produced: 24 poses (portraits) (1999); Avec Norm (2004); Les bonbons qui sauvent la vie (2004); (2007) and Excuse-moi (2010).

René Richard Cyr's theatre awards include 2 prix Gascon-Roux: best director for Molière's L'École des femmes (Théâtre du Nouveau Monde, 1991), and for Michel TREMBLAY's En pièces détachées, awarded by theatre subscribers (1994). He also won 2 Masques: best private theatre production from the Académie québécoise du théâtre for both Les Parapluies de Cherbourg (2001) and L'Homme de la Mancha (2002), which also scooped up the Masque prix du public. These two highly successful musical theatre pieces were presented at the Centre culturel de Joliette, where René Richard Cyr also produced Willy Russell's Frères de sang on stage in 2004.

Designer and host of the program Le plaisir croît avec l'usage on Télé-Québec (2 prix Gémeaux for best variety show, 1999 and 2000), René Richard Cyr also shot several televised galas (Soirée des Masques, Fête nationale, Juste pour rire), and produced shows for Michel Lemieux, Joe Bocan, Diane DUFRESNE and Céline DION that received Félix awards at the ADISQ galas. He received a PRIX GÉMEAUX for the TV drama 24 poses (portraits) in 2001. In 2003, René Richard Cyr and Dominic Champagne co-directed Cirque de Soleil's Zumanity in Las Vegas, and in 2004-2005, Cyr made a TV comeback as a transvestite in the series Cover Girl that attracted much attention. He recently directed highly acclaimed productions of Élizabeth, roi d'Angleterre (TNM, 2008), René-Daniel Dubois' Bob at the Théâtre d'Aujourd'hui (critics' prize for best Montréal production, 2008), and L'Effet des rayons gamma sur les vieux garçons at the Théâtre du Rideau Vert (2009).

Further, René Richard Cyr wrote the libretto for and staged the musical comedy Belles-Sœurs, inspired by Michel Tremblay's seminal play, at the THÉÂTRE D'AUJOURD' HUI (where he was artistic director and assistant general director, 1998-2004), slated for the spring of 2010, and again at the Centre culturel de Joliette the following autumn.