Where does comedian Popeck live?
Popeck Private Album
Meeting with Popeck at his home in Neuilly. A thundering octogenarian, the comedian and comedian likes to read and even re-read his favorite books in his office. While he resumes the tour of his one man show "I'll go to the end", this epicurean claims the art of doing nothing. Hat down the artist! Interview.
Immutable in the character he created to measure, Popeck has scored several generations. If many remember his role as Moïshe Schmoll in "The Adventures of Rabbi Jacob" and his most famous skits, Popeck has lost none of his wit! By welcoming us home, he goes back in time and reviews the books that feed him but also the personalities who counted.
Last May, he blew his 80s and yet he remains more than ever active. He is everywhere or almost. In the cinema: he plays a small and shattering role in Sylvain Attal's new film "They are everywhere". On stage: he finished at the end of May 2016 performances of Laurent Baffie's play "Toc Toc" and he has just resumed the tour of his one man show.
And the decor in all this? He was for a very long time a compulsive bargain hunter, passionate about antique furniture. And for good reason: he began his professional life as a cabinetmaker. Intimate visit punctuated by some bursts of laughter and music!
How would you describe the style of your interior?
Popeck: All styles coexist.
You had a real passion for antique furniture?
Popeck: Yes, I could spend whole days at Drouot: I had a talent to buy and sell. Sometimes, I took friends to initiate them to the strings of an auction: to give voice early to make themselves known, then make small signs. That's how I furnished my house in Beauce.
At the time when I was still living in a small studio of nothing, I had bought a sofa Louis XIII. Because the next day, I received Pierre Prévert with whom I was shooting and I invited the whole team to dinner. When my wife arrived and she saw the sofa that occupied all the space: she started crying.
Did this passion leave you?
Popeck: Only the theater virus and the one-man show have never happened to me.
What remains of your acquisitions at Drouot?
Popeck: Two objects: a rococo oval mirror and a carved buffet top. I separated from everything when I sold my house in Normandy to live in Neuilly.
The most amazing or unexpected that can be discovered at home?
Popeck: An artist friend had the idea to keep only the carved central part of an old buffet top that represents Venice with a courtesan and gondolas. It's a beautiful piece: a true work of art. As a former cabinetmaker, I appreciate the work that has been done so precisely with gouge.
"The central part carved from the top of an old buffet top that represents Venice with a courtesan and gondolas ..."
An object or piece of furniture that you could not separate?
Popeck: My Louis XVI style office.
What strikes the most in the living room?
Popeck: A collection of cats on eight shelves: it's my wife's! I do not want to see any more. At the origin of this collection, the real cat we had to separate because my wife sneezed constantly until the diagnosis reveals an allergy to cat hair.
Your favorite room where you like to be and spend time?
Popeck: My desk. This is where I have all my books. When I sold my home in Beauce twenty years ago, I had to relinquish more than 600 pounds.
And what's in your library?
Popeck: I read a little bit of everything and on my shelves, it's the big anything: there are also books about actors, comedians, Jewish humor. In the disorder, we find Aragon, Yves Simon, Sacha Guitry, Harry Baur, Aznavour, Francis Veber, Gainsbourg, Marcello Mastroianni, Sammy Davis Junior, Chaplin, Baudelaire, Diderot, Georges Brassens, Courteline, Tristan Bernard, Frédéric Dard, Flaubert, Semprun Artaud ... and also this wonderful book Maus d'Art Spiegelman, in which the Nazis are represented by cats. I also have "History of French Cinema" in five volumes: a very rare edition!
A favorite reading?
Popeck: The conversations between Léautaud and Léo Malet that a friend made me discover.
Reading the moment?
Popeck: I reread the work of Sartre and all that has been written about him and also Stefan Zweig! In talking to you, I just found "The words" of Jean-Paul Sartre that I looked for hours! It's better to re-read a book a second time.
Your favorite home occupation when you are not reading?
Popeck: Doing nothing is a pleasure too. To think of nothing is great art. I am able to stay hours without talking and without thinking of anything.
Objects that you care about?
Popeck: Portraits of relatives, photos of Marcel Achard, Louis de Funès, a map of Annie Cordy ... a drawing by Pierre Prévert. Several dedications like those of Barbara, Carlos ...; a letter from Philippe Avron and some words from my friend Pierre Huth; full of little bits of paper including those written by my little girl who is now 15 years old and who was six years old writing stage advice! I kept posters of my shows and especially photos especially those of René Simon who was my master: I owe him my career and my destiny. His master sentence that I wrote basically: "Amaze me"!
Photo of young popeck with René Simon: "summer my master: I owe him my career and my destiny."
An unusual memory?
Popeck: The ticket for a Horowitz recital that cost me a lot of money and which I did a skit in which I said in particular: "I thought he was selling the piano for this price!"
Popeck: As a cabinetmaker, I kept a riflard, a truscan and a plane: these are three tools about which I even composed small poems on pieces of cardboard.
And cooking is your domain?
Popeck : No because I have a woman who cooks everything perfectly and knows how to treat me: it is even impossible for me to take my meals outside! I have, however, an obligation to be in shape, to eat pasta 1:30 before going on stage.
Do you live with music or rather in silence?
Popeck: In music ! Proof to support: I even have a record ready. Here is the new record player that I bought myself: it's a model copied on the old one. But for a better quality of sound, I also listen to CDs and sometimes concerts broadcast on TV.
And the TV, in which room ?
Popeck: In the living room.
What's on your night table ?
Popeck: A transistor station with headsets to listen to the news and books: "Hello, I'll pass Jean-Paul Sartre" Germaine Sorbets, "The big anything" by Jean-Pierre Marielle, "The thoughts" of Jules Renard , "The quiet force" of Simone de Beauvoir, "A rabbi in the city" Gilles Bernheim, A study on Robert Desnos by Pierre Bergé.
Rather orderly or messy?
Popeck: I'm not messy but not ordained either.
What you miss when you're on tour ?
Popeck: All ! I have a virus: Paris. My wife would love to travel but leaving Paris, I'm afraid that something will escape me.
Do you dream of one more room? If so, for what purpose?
Popeck: A fitness room because I only have alters and a bike. I do it every day.
Your dream ?
Popeck: I kept in mind this phrase from Piccoli in "Selfish Dialogues": "Success is the best of sleeping pills". I became bourgeois! I can write a sketch in 3 minutes, then work hard to make it exist and create the alchemy with the public: I would love to write a play!
News from Popeck :
- On stage: he resumes his tour show in all France: see the dates on his official website www.popeck.fr
- At the movies in the movie Sylvain Attal: "They are everywhere"