” Le 9 “





I’ve always wanted to live over the shop and thanks to my husband and hopefully the good graces of the Avignon municipality that’s what I’ll be doing this autumn.

The shop, by the way, is a theatre.

With ten years or so out of the loop as a journalist, I’ve spent most of my life in professional theatre: have run them in Tokyo, Hong Kong and Antibes but this is the big one, the birth of “Le 9” a new dedicated performance space on the ground floor of our newly renovated home in central Avignon. Drawing on many of the talents who trod the boards at the Red Pear Theatre in Antibes for nearly 20 years, Theatre Le 9 will present a variety of performances from classical recitals, through cabaret to one man and small cast plays. Anne Reid (currently TV’s Celia in Last Tango in Halifax) and Julian Glover (currently Royal Shakespeare Company and Game of Thrones) are among the stars lined up to perform during the first season. In the world of classical music, I am aided by Grand Avignon Opera directeur de la communication et du développement’s, Arnaud Lanez as conseiller artistique..Programming will include Masterclasses and reach out educational projects taking actors and musicians into the classroom, continuing a tradition I began with the major international schools of the Cote d’Azur.

So, we’re finalising the fireproofing, lighting grid plans and are currently searching for some reasonably priced seating (anyone any ideas?) We hope to open in October and will present top quality entertainment regularly until June, when we pause for the glories and madness that is the festival. Our goal is to offer a variety of professional entertainment from UK, Ireland and USA for a theatre and music loving anglophone audience that lives in the area.

Thanks to Rebecca whose support and enthusiasm is , I know, shared by many women here who are realising their dreams, I hope to see all of you at Le 9, where I realise mine.

Hilary Lemaire