Considered to be the premier Theatre in France, the Comédie Française is a unique place in all the world. Founded in 1680, it rests on 3 pillars:
- The Company: Members of the Company (la “Troupe”) are known as “pensionnaires” and after at least one year of membership can become “sociétaires”. Together, they are the last theatrical company in France and are the only actors and actresses allowed to perform at the Comédie Française. The Company has performed throughout the centuries since the time of Molière.
- The Repertoire: A collection of 3,000 works, forming a unique foundation of French and international literature and history, which is still being expanded today. Only the works comprising the Repertoire may feature in the main auditorium of the Comédie Française, Salle Richelieu.
- Alternation: a rule requiring performers to alternate roles and stage teams to perform up to 8 plays simultaneously in the three auditoriums, and during tours in France or abroad.
Each season, the Comédie Française welcomes more than 300,000 spectators and raises the curtain more than 800 times during the year. A place of discipline and excellence, the Comédie Française has its own workshops for decorations, costumes, furnishings and accessories. To direct and stage the boldest and most innovative plays, 340 employees work in over 70 different professions that are handed down and reinvented from generation to generation.