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Stéphanie Blanchoud, an actress between fire and water

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Short hair, determined look, confident walk, she walks towards the ring. Then he arrives, more nonchalant than a brawler, a cigarette in his mouth. The bathrobes fall and reveal evening clothes. We will not attend a boxing match, but the dramatization of a couple’s dispute, between pas de deux, bringing together of bodies and sudden outbursts.

It is through this video putting in pictures Decor, bewitching pop-folk rhyme in duet with Daan, that we discovered Stephanie Blanchoud in 2015. The following year, the singer revealed herself at the Paléo Festival, when she became the heroine of the series Public enemy. She plays an inspector responsible for monitoring a killer of children on parole. Stephanie Blanchoud sings, but also plays comedy. She will have been slow to get people to accept the idea that she will never privilege one artistic form to the detriment of another, she says.

On edge

It is at Bouveret (VS) that we meet her. On the set of Line , a Belgian-Swiss co-production – like its origins – in which she plays Margaret, “35 years old and a heavy past marked by violent behavior”, underlines the synopsis. Margaret returned to live with her mother, played by Valeria Bruni Tedeschi, but following another bout of violence, she is no longer allowed to approach the family home within 200 meters. Line is the third cinema feature film byUrsula meier, and it is no coincidence that she plays the main role: the filmmaker had directed the video for Decor.

Stéphanie Blanchoud evokes a happy shoot, even if the atmosphere is, pandemic obliges, less friendly: “In the evening, we do not invite each other to have a drink.” The teams that stay on site are tested every ten days, those who go back and forth are tested as soon as they return to the set. The actress appreciates the tragicomic treatment of the story, promises something very beautiful and very visual, filmed in scope by the chief operator Agnès Godard, faithful collaborator of Claire Denis who previously worked with Ursula Meier on Reception and The Child from above.

We then think of a western atmosphere. The actress likes the idea, she talks about a duel but also about territory. “Margaret is a very skinny girl,” she explains. But I don’t feel like using terms like bipolar or borderline; it is rather a pressure cooker who does not know how to manage her emotions and can destroy an entire living room … She has a hypersensitive side in which I can find myself, but with her, everything comes out of the body. “

To read: In Geneva, Stéphanie Blanchoud’s requiem touches the heart

This volcanic character, Stéphanie Blanchoud has developed with Ursula Meier. It was a long writing process, and Margaret has come a long way from a first draft called Car Wash. “On the last stage of labor, I had to detach myself from it. Since I was going to embody it, it was important that I let go of the writing and let Ursula reclaim the project. But I learned a lot from him since I normally write for the theater. ” A love of the boards that the actress cultivated by taking acting lessons as a teenager.

While she had planned to study medicine, Stéphanie Blanchoud finally enrolled in Roman philology in Paris, while following an internship at Cours Florent. The pleasure of playing, which reminds her of childhood, finally sees her enrolling at the Royal Conservatory of Brussels.

She also learned singing there, which helped her a lot: “Singing involves such exposure that alongside it, playing a character seems extremely simple. It uninhibited me, I ask myself fewer questions. ” So much so that today she is pursuing a dual career. More pop, more arranged and less folk than the purified ones Beautiful days (2015), her third album will be released in the fall. When, she hopes, she can defend him on stage.

Explosion and concentration

From her father’s French-speaking region, she remembers the holidays spent with her cousins ​​in Blonay. But despite this attachment, she will not work until late in Switzerland, when in 2017 she will stage in Geneva. Jackson Bay, a play written in collaboration with Véronique Olmi.

The same year, she created in Brussels her first solo on stage, I am a featherweight, devoted to boxing. A sport that she practices as an amateur, after years of competitive tennis. “I wanted something more complex than dancing… and I stumbled upon boxing,” she smiles. It’s at the same time explosion, concentration and relaxation, choreography and changes of rhythm… It changed the way I embody my characters. ” And especially Margaret, certainly.

Started on January 25, the shooting of Line ended last Wednesday. Place in the editing, for a release scheduled for 2022. But in fact, how does Ursula Meier perceive her actress? While she was settling the last details of this final day of shooting, she sent us this message: “Two short sentences will not be enough to describe Stéphanie, she is so rich, complex and multiple… She is fire and water in same time!”


nineteen eighty one Birth in Uccle, near Brussels, of a Belgian mother and a French-speaking father.

2003 First prize at the Royal Conservatory of Brussels.

2014 Winner of the Textes en scène competition, an initiative of Arsenic in Lausanne and Saint-Gervais in Geneva.

2016 First season of the series “Public Enemy”.

2021 Shooting of “La Ligne”, by Ursula Meier, and release in autumn of her third album.

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