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Encyclopedia > Jean Cocteau
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Jean Maurice Eugène Clément Cocteau (5 July 188911 October 1963) was a French poet, novelist, dramatist, designer, boxing manager and filmmaker. Along with other Surrealists of his generation (Jean Anouilh and Rene Char for example) Cocteau grappled with the "algebra" of verbal codes old and new, mise en scene language and technologies of modernism to create a paradox:a classical avant-garde. His circle of associates, friends and lovers included Jean Marais, Henri Bernstein, Edith Piaf and Raymond Radiguet. Like Victor Hugo and Charles Beaudelaire, he intended his artistic work to serve a dual purpose -- to be entertaining and political. The results played out in the theatrical world of the Grands Theatres, the Boulevards and beyond during the Parisian epoque he both lived through and helped define and create. His versitile, unconventional approach and enormous output brought him international acclaim. In some circles, Jean Cocteau is believed to have been one of the grandmasters of the Priory of Sion. Image File history File links Broom_icon. ... is the 186th day of the year (187th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1889 (MDCCCLXXXIX) was a common year starting on Tuesday (link will display the full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar (or a common year starting on Sunday of the 12-day slower Julian calendar). ... is the 284th day of the year (285th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... For other uses, see 1963 (disambiguation). ... The poor poet A poet is a person who writes poetry. ... A novel is an extended work of written, narrative, prose fiction, usually in story form; the writer of a novel is a novelist. ... A dramatist is an author of dramatic compositions, usually plays. ... Designer is a broad term for a person who designs any of a variety of things. ... For other senses of these words, see boxing (disambiguation) or boxer (disambiguation). ... The film director, on the right, gives last minute direction to the cast and crew, whilst filming a costume drama on location in London. ... Prieuré de Sion, usually rendered in English translation as Priory of Sion or even Priory of Zion, is an elusive protagonist in many works of both non-fiction and fiction. ...

Contents

Early years

Cocteau was born in Maisons-Laffitte, a small town near Paris to Georges Cocteau and his wife Eugénie Lecomte, a prominent Parisian family. His father was a lawyer and amateur painter, who committed suicide when Cocteau was nine. At the age of fifteen, Cocteau left home. Despite his achievements in virtually all literary and artistic fields, Cocteau insisted that he was primarily a poet and that all his work was poetry. He published his first volume of poems, Aladdin's Lamp, at nineteen. Soon Cocteau became known in the Bohemian artistic circles as 'The Frivolous Prince'—the title of a volume he published at twenty-one. Edith Wharton described him as a man "to whom every great line of poetry was a sunrise, every sunset the foundation of the Heavenly City..." Maisons-Laffitte is a commune in the northwestern suburbs of Paris, France. ... This article is about the capital of France. ... For other uses, see Bohemian (disambiguation). ... Edith Wharton (January 24, 1862 – August 11, 1937) was an American novelist, short story writer, and designer. ...


In his early twenties, Cocteau became associated with Marcel Proust, André Gide, and Maurice Barrès. The Russian ballet-master Sergei Diaghilev challenged Cocteau to write for the ballet - "Astonish me," he urged. This resulted in Parade which was produced by Diaghilev, designed by Pablo Picasso, and composed by Erik Satie in 1917. An important exponent of Surrealism, he had great influence on the work of others, including the group of composer friends in Montparnasse known as Les Six. The word Surrealism was coined, in fact, by Guillaume Apollinaire to describe Parade, a work which was initially not well-received.[1] "If it had not been for Apollinaire in uniform," wrote Cocteau, "with his skull shaved, the scar on his temple and the bandage around his head, women would have gouged our eyes out with hairpins." “Proust” redirects here. ... Gide redirects here. ... Maurice Barrès (September 22, 1862 - December 4, 1923), French novelist, politician, radical conservative and anti-semite was born at Charmes-sur-Moselle (Vosges). ... Portrait of Sergei Diaghilev by Valentin Serov (1904) Sergei Pavlovich Diaghilev (Russian: / Sergei Pavlovich Dyagilev), also referred to as Serge, (March 31, 1872 – August 19, 1929) was a Russian art critic, patron, ballet impresario and founder of the Ballets Russes from which many famous dancers and choreographers would later arise. ... Parade is a ballet with music by Erik Satie and a one-act scenario by Jean Cocteau. ... Picasso redirects here. ... Selfportrait of Erik Satie. ... 1917 (MCMXVII) was a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar (see link for calendar) or a common year starting on Tuesday of the 13-day slower Julian calendar (see: 1917 Julian calendar). ... Max Ernst. ... The Montparnasse Tower, which at 209m was the tallest building in Western Europe when it was built. ... Le Groupe des Six, 1922, by Jacques-Emile Blanche. ... Guillaume Apollinaire Guillaume Apollinaire (August 26, 1880 – November 9, 1918) was a poet, writer, and art critic. ...


Friendship with Raymond Radiguet

In 1918 he met the 15-year-old poet Raymond Radiguet. The two collaborated extensively, socialized, and undertook many journeys and vacations together. Cocteau also got the youth exempted from military service. In admiration of Radiguet's great literary talent, Cocteau promoted his friend's works in his artistic circle and also arranged for the publication by Grasset of Le Diable au corps (a largely autobiographical story of an adulterous relationship between a married woman and a younger man), exerting his influence to garner the "Nouveau Monde" literary prize for the novel. 1918 (MCMXVIII) was a common year starting on Tuesday of the Gregorian calendar (see link for calendar) or a common year starting on Wednesday of the Julian calendar. ... Raymond Radiguet (June 18, 1903 - December 12, 1923) was a French author. ...


There is disagreement over Cocteau's reaction to Radiguet's sudden death in 1923, with some claiming that it left him stunned, despondent and prey to opium addiction. Opponents of that interpretation point out that he did not attend the funeral (he generally did not attend funerals) and immediately left Paris with Diaghilev for a performance of Les Noces by the Ballets Russes at Monte Carlo. Cocteau himself much later characterised his reaction as one of "stupor and disgust". His opium addiction at the time,[2] Cocteau said, was only coincidental, due to a chance meeting with Louis Laloy, the administrator of the Monte Carlo Opera. Cocteau's opium use and his efforts to stop profoundly changed his literary style. His most notable book, Les Enfants Terribles, was written in a week during a strenuous opium weaning. This article is about the drug. ... Les Noces (English: The Wedding; Russian: Свадебка) is a dance cantata, or ballet with singers, with a libretto in Russian composed by Igor Stravinsky and choreographed by Bronislava Nijinska that was premiered on June 13, 1923, by the Ballets Russes. ... Léon Bakst: Firebird, Ballerina, 1910 There was also the Ballet Russe de Monte Carlo from 1932 to 1963 The Ballets Russes was a ballet company established in 1909 by the Russian impresario Serge Diaghilev and resident first in the Théâtre Mogador and Théâtre du Châtelet, Paris... Monte Carlo is a very wealthy section of the city-state of Monaco known for its casino, gambling, beaches, glamour, and sightings of famous people. ... Les Enfants Terribles is a 1929 novel by Jean Cocteau. ... This article is about the drug. ...


It has been suggested that Cocteau's friendship with Radiguet was also an intense and often stormy love affair, but there is no documented evidence that this is true. See Historical pederastic relationships. Whitman & Duckett Over the course of history there have been a number of recorded love-based mentoring relationships between older men and adolescent boys. ...


The Human Voice

Cocteau's experiments with the human voice peaked with his play La Voix Humaine. The story involves one woman on stage speaking with her (invisible and inaudible) departing lover, who is leaving her to marry another woman, on the telephone. The invention of Alexander Graham Bell in 1875 grew out of the teacher of the deaf's long-time desire to develop a "harmonic telegraph" and the newer idea of a telephone. Leading up to the 1929/1930 theatrical production, Bell had won the prestigious Volta prize along with 50,000 francs from the Academie francaise in Paris in 1880 and the first transatlantic radiotelephone service had been laid in 1924. The telephone proved to be the perfect prop for Cocteau to explore his ideas, feelings and "algebra" concerning human needs and realities in communication. La voix humaine (English: The Human Voice) is a one act opera for one character, with music by Francis Poulenc and a libretto by Jean Cocteau, based on his 1932 play. ...


Cocteau acknowledged in the introduction to the script that the play was motivated, in part, by complaints from his actresses that his works were too much writer/directed dominated and gave the players little opportunity to show off their full range of talents. La Voix Humaine was written, in effect, as an extravagant aria for Madame Berthe Bovy. Before came Orphee, later turned into more of his more successful films; after came La Machine Infernale, arguably his most fully realized work of art. La Voix Humaine is deceptively simple -- a woman alone on stage for almost one hour of non-stop theatre speaking on the telephone with her (invisible and inaudible) departing lover who has decided to marry another woman. It is, in fact, full of theatrical codes harking back to the Dadaists' Vox Humana experiments after World War One, Alphonse de Lamartine's "La Voix Humaine", part of his larger work Harmonies Poetiques et Religieuses and the effect of the creation of the Vox Humana (Voix Humaine) an organ stop of the Regal Class by Church organ masters (late 1500s)that attempted to imitate the human voice but never succeeded in doing better than the sound of a male chorus at a distance. La voix humaine (English: The Human Voice) is a one act opera for one character, with music by Francis Poulenc and a libretto by Jean Cocteau, based on his 1932 play. ... Orphée (also known as Orpheus) is a 1949 movie directed by Jean Cocteau starring Jean Marais. ... La voix humaine (English: The Human Voice) is a one act opera for one character, with music by Francis Poulenc and a libretto by Jean Cocteau, based on his 1932 play. ...


Reviews varied at the time and since but whatever the critique the play, in a nutshell, represents Cocteau's state of mind and feelings towards his actors at the time:on the one hand he desired to spoil and plese them; on the other, he was fed up by their diva antics and was ready for revenge. It is also true that none of Cocteau's works has inspired as much imitation:Francis Poulenc's opea of the same name, Gian Carlo Menotti's "opera bouffa" Le Telephone and Roberto Rosselini's film version in Italian with Anna Magnani La Voce Umana to name the high point. There has also been a long line of interpreters including Simone Signoret and Liv Ullman (the play) and Julia Migenes (the opera). If not a zero degree turn work of genius, La Voix Humaine is an exceptionally rewarding phenome for artistic and social study. La voix humaine (English: The Human Voice) is a one act opera for one character, with music by Francis Poulenc and a libretto by Jean Cocteau, based on his 1932 play. ...


There are various theories about how Cocteau was inspired to write La Voix Humaine, one of the more intriguing ones being that he was experimenting with an idea by fellow French playright Henri Bernstein.[3] "When, in 1930, the Comedie-Francaise produced his La Voix Humaine...Cocteau disavowed both literary right and literary left, as if to say, "I'm standing as far right as Bernstein, in his very place, but it is an optical illusion:the avant-garde is spheroid and I've gone farther left than anyone else." La voix humaine (English: The Human Voice) is a one act opera for one character, with music by Francis Poulenc and a libretto by Jean Cocteau, based on his 1932 play. ... La voix humaine (English: The Human Voice) is a one act opera for one character, with music by Francis Poulenc and a libretto by Jean Cocteau, based on his 1932 play. ...


Maturity

In the 1930s, Cocteau had an unlikely affair with Princess Natalie Paley, the beautiful daughter of a Romanov grand duke and herself a fashion-plate, sometimes actress, model, and former wife of couturier Lucien Lelong. She became pregnant. To Cocteau's distress and Paley's life-long regret, the fetus was aborted. Cocteau's longest-lasting relationships were with the French actors Jean Marais, whom he cast in Beauty and the Beast and Ruy Blas, and Edouard Dermit, whom Cocteau formally adopted. The 1930s (years from 1930–1939) were described as an abrupt shift to more radical and conservative lifestyles, as countries were struggling to find a solution to the Great Depression, also known as the World Depression. ... Jean Maurice Eugène Clément Cocteau (July 5, 1889 – October 11, 1963) was a French poet, novelist, dramatist, designer, and filmmaker. ... Her Serene Highness Princess Natalia Pavlovna Paley (Наτаля Павловна Палей) (December 5, 1905 – December 27, 1981) was a French-born fashion icon, socialite, and film actress who was a first cousin of the last Russian emperor, Nicholas II. Best known as Natalie Paley, she was born Countess Natalia Pavlovna von Hohenfelsen in Paris... The House of Romanov (Рома́нов, pronounced ) was the second and last imperial dynasty of Russia, which ruled the country for five generations from 1613 to 1761. ... Lucien Lelong (1889-1958) was a French fashion designer. ... A pregnant woman Pregnancy is the process by which a mammalian female carries a live offspring from conception until it develops to the point where the offspring is capable of living outside the womb. ... Jean Maurice Eugène Clément Cocteau (July 5, 1889 – October 11, 1963) was a French poet, novelist, dramatist, designer, and filmmaker. ... An abortion is the removal or expulsion of an embryo or fetus from the uterus, resulting in or caused by its death. ... Jean Maurice Eugène Clément Cocteau (July 5, 1889 – October 11, 1963) was a French poet, novelist, dramatist, designer, and filmmaker. ... Jean Marais photo taken by Carl Van Vechten, 1947 Jean Marais, born Jean-Alfred Villain-Marais (December 11, 1913 - November 8, 1998) was a French actor, and the lover of Jean Cocteau. ... Beauty and the Beast (in French: La Belle et la Bête) is a French film, made in 1946, based on the fairy tale Beauty and the Beast. The film was directed by Jean Cocteau, and starred his gay lover Jean Marais as the Beast and Josette Day as Beauty. ... Ruy Blas is a tragic drama by Victor Hugo. ... Jean Maurice Eugène Clément Cocteau (July 5, 1889 – October 11, 1963) was a French poet, novelist, dramatist, designer, and filmmaker. ...


In 1940, Le Bel Indifférent, Cocteau's play written for and starring Édith Piaf, was enormously successful. He also worked with Picasso on several projects and was friends with most of the European art community. He struggled with an opium addiction for most of his adult life and was openly gay, though he had a few brief and complicated affairs with women. He published a considerable amount of work criticising homophobia. Year 1940 (MCMXL) was a leap year starting on Monday (link will display the full 1940 calendar) of the Gregorian calendar. ... Jean Maurice Eugène Clément Cocteau (July 5, 1889 – October 11, 1963) was a French poet, novelist, dramatist, designer, and filmmaker. ... Édith Piaf (December 19, 1915–October 11, 1963) was one of Frances most beloved singers,[1] and became a national icon. ... Picasso redirects here. ... GAY can mean: Gay, a term referring to homosexual men or women The IATA code for Gaya Airport Category: ... A protest by The Westboro Baptist Church, a group identified by the Anti-Defamation League as virulently homophobic. ...


Cocteau's films, the bulk of which he both wrote and directed, were particularly important in introducing Surrealism into French cinema and influenced to a certain degree the upcoming French New Wave genre. Jean Maurice Eugène Clément Cocteau (July 5, 1889 – October 11, 1963) was a French poet, novelist, dramatist, designer, and filmmaker. ...


Cocteau is best known for Les enfants terribles the 1929 play, Les parents terribles the 1948 film, and the 1946 film, Beauty and the Beast. Jean Maurice Eugène Clément Cocteau (July 5, 1889 – October 11, 1963) was a French poet, novelist, dramatist, designer, and filmmaker. ... Les Enfants Terribles is a 1929 novel by Jean Cocteau. ... Year 1929 (MCMXXIX) was a common year starting on Tuesday (link will display the full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar. ... Jean Cocteaus 1948 boulevard farce-with-a-vengeance Les parents terribles tells the tale of Michael and his Parents Terribles, George and Yvonne. ... Year 1948 (MCMXLVIII) was a leap year starting on Thursday (link will display the 1948 calendar) of the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1946 (MCMXLVI) was a common year starting on Tuesday (link will display full 1946 calendar) of the Gregorian calendar. ... Beauty and the Beast (in French: La Belle et la Bête) is a French film, made in 1946, based on the fairy tale Beauty and the Beast. The film was directed by Jean Cocteau, and starred his gay lover Jean Marais as the Beast and Josette Day as Beauty. ...


Cocteau died of a heart attack at his chateau in Milly-la-Foret, France, on 11 October 1963 at the age of 74, only hours after hearing of the death of his friend, the French singer Édith Piaf. He is buried in the garden of his home in Milly La Foret, Essonne, France. The epitaph reads: "I stay among you." Jean Maurice Eugène Clément Cocteau (July 5, 1889 – October 11, 1963) was a French poet, novelist, dramatist, designer, and filmmaker. ... Heart attack redirects here. ... A château ( French for castle; plural châteaux) is a manor house or residence of the lord of the manor or a country house of gentry, usually French, with or without fortifications. ... is the 284th day of the year (285th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... For other uses, see 1963 (disambiguation). ... Édith Piaf (December 19, 1915–October 11, 1963) was one of Frances most beloved singers,[1] and became a national icon. ... Milly-la-Forêt is a town and commune in the Essonne département, in France. ... Essonne is a French department in the region of ÃŽle-de-France. ...


Awards and recognitions

In 1955 Cocteau was made a member of the Académie française and The Royal Academy of Belgium. Year 1955 (MCMLV) was a common year starting on Saturday (link displays the 1955 Gregorian calendar). ... The Académie française In the French educational system an académie LAcadémie française, or the French Academy, is the pre-eminent French learned body on matters pertaining to the French language. ... There are two Royal Academies for Science and the Arts in Belgium, corresponding to the two main languages of the country, Dutch (Flanders) and French (Wallonia). ...


During his life Cocteau was commander of the Legion of Honor, Member of the Mallarmé Academy, German Academy (Berlin), American Academy, Mark Twain (U.S.A) Academy, Honorary President of the Cannes film festival, Honorary President of the France-Hungary Association and President of the jazz Academy and of the Academy of the Disc. Chiang Kai-sheks Légion dhonneur. ... The Cannes Film Festival (French: le Festival de Cannes), founded in 1939, is one of the worlds oldest, most influential and prestigious film festivals. ...


Filmography

Feature Films

The Blood of a Poet (French: Le Sang dun Poete)is a 1930 film directed by Jean Cocteau. ... Beauty and the Beast (in French: La Belle et la Bête) is a French film, made in 1946, based on the fairy tale Beauty and the Beast. The film was directed by Jean Cocteau, and starred his gay lover Jean Marais as the Beast and Josette Day as Beauty. ... Jean Cocteaus 1948 boulevard farce-with-a-vengeance Les parents terribles tells the tale of Michael and his Parents Terribles, George and Yvonne. ... Orpheus (French: Orphée) is a 1950 French film directed by Jean Cocteau and starring Jean Marais. ... Testament of Orpheus is a 1959 film directed by and starring Jean Cocteau. ...

Short Films

  • La villa Santo-Sospir (1952)

A 35-minute amateur or home film directed by Jean Cocteau in which Cocteau takes the viewer on a tour of a friends villa on the French coast (a major location used in Testament of Orpheus). ...

Other Films

  • Coriolan (1950) Never Released
  • 8 X 8: A Chess Sonata in 8 Movements (1957) Co-director, Experimental

Bibliography

Selected works:

  • Cocteau, Jean, Le coq et l'arlequin: Notes autour de la musique - avec un portrait de l'Auteur et deux monogrammes par P. Picasso, Paris, Éditions de la Sirène, 1918
  • Cocteau, Jean, Le Grand écart, 1923, his first novel[3]
  • Cocteau, Jean, The Human Voice, translated by Carl Wildman, Vision Press Ltd., Great Britain, 1947
  • Cocteau, Jean, The Eagle Has Two Heads, adapted by Ronald Duncan, Vision Press Ltd., Great Britain, 1947
  • Cocteau, Jean, The Holy Terrors (Les enfants terribles), translated by Rosamond Lehmann, New Directions Publishing Corp., New York, 1957
  • Cocteau, Jean, Opium: The Diary of a Cure, translated by Margaret Crosland and Sinclair Road, Grove Press Inc., New York, 1958
  • Cocteau, Jean, The Infernal Machine And Other Plays, translated by W.A. Auden, E.E. Cummings, Dudley Fitts, Albert Bermel, Mary C. Hoeck, and John K. Savacool, New Directions Books, New York, 1963
  • Cocteau, Jean, Toros Muertos, along with Lucien Clergue and Jean Petit, Brussel & Brussel,1966
  • Cocteau, Jean, The Art of Cinema, edited by André Bernard and Claude Gauteur, translated by Robin Buss, Marion Boyars, London, 1988
  • Cocteau, Jean, Diary of an Unknown, translated by Jesse Browner, Paragon House Publishers, New York, 1988
  • Cocteau, Jean, The White Book (Le livre blanc), translated by Margaret Crosland, City Lights Books, San Francisco, 1989
  • Cocteau, Jean, Les parents terribles, new translation by Jeremy Sams, Nick Hern Books, London, 1994

Les Enfants Terribles is a 1929 novel by Jean Cocteau. ... Lucien Clergue (born August 14, 1934 in Arles) is a french photographer From the age of 7, Lucien Clergue learnt to play the violin. ...

External links

Wikiquote has a collection of quotations related to:
Jean Cocteau

Image File history File links This is a lossless scalable vector image. ... Wikiquote is one of a family of wiki-based projects run by the Wikimedia Foundation, running on MediaWiki software. ... The Internet Movie Database (IMDb) is an online database of information about movies, actors, television shows, production crew personnel, and video games. ... The Open Directory Project (ODP), also known as dmoz (from , its original domain name), is a multilingual open content directory of World Wide Web links owned by Netscape that is constructed and maintained by a community of volunteer editors. ... Le Groupe des Six, 1922, by Jacques-Emile Blanche. ...

References

  1. ^ [1]
  2. ^ [2]
  3. ^ [Brown, Frederick,An Impersonation of Angels:A Biography of Jean Cocteau, The Viking Press, New York, p.170

Other references

Preceded by
Jérôme Tharaud
Seat 31
Académie française

1955–1963
Succeeded by
Jacques Rueff
Persondata
NAME Cocteau, Jean
ALTERNATIVE NAMES
SHORT DESCRIPTION French poet, novelist, dramatist, designer, boxing manager and filmmaker
DATE OF BIRTH 5 July 1889
PLACE OF BIRTH Maisons-Laffitte, France
DATE OF DEATH 11 October 1963
PLACE OF DEATH Milly-la-Foret, France

  Results from FactBites:
 
Jean Cocteau - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (1034 words)
To Cocteau's distress and Paley's life-long regret, the fetus was aborted.
Cocteau is also rumored to have carried on a relationship with Panama Al Brown, a boxer he managed during the 1930's [2], but no docomented evidence of the reality of this relationship exists.
During his life Cocteau was commander of the Legion of Honor, Member of the Mallarmé Academy, German Academy (Berlin), American Academy, Mark Twain (U.S.A) Academy, Honorary President of the Cannes film festival, Honorary President of the France-Hungary Association and President of the jazz Academy and of the Academy of the Disc.
Jean Cocteau - definition of Jean Cocteau in Encyclopedia (777 words)
During his life Jean Cocteau was commander of the Legion of Honor, Member of the Mallarmé Academy, German Academy (Berlin), American Academy, Mark Twain (U.S.A) Academy, Honorary President of the Cannes film festival, Honorary President of the France-Hungary Association and President of the jazz Academy and of the Academy of the Disc.
To Cocteau's distress and Paley's lifelong regret, the fetus was aborted due to the intervention of Marie-Laure de Noailles, the arts patron who had loved Cocteau as a young woman and was determined to ruin his new romance.
Jean Cocteau died in 1963 and is buried in Chapelle St. Blaise, Milly La Foret, Essonne departement, France.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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