Actors are known for baring their souls on stage. But the cast of a new French play went a step further – and so did their audience.
The one-off performance of “Nu et Approuvé,” or “Naked and Approved,” which took place at the Palais des Glaces theater in Paris on Sunday, required all audience members, as well as the actors, to get naked.
This was a request made even more daunting by the weather – Paris saw temperatures hovering just above zero degrees Celsius (32 degrees Fahrenheit) on Sunday.
But for those who braved the chill, the show appears to have been a hit – the theater commended the “successful experience” on Twitter, while the French nudist community welcomed it with open arms.
“There is no better way of laughing than to laugh in the nude,” Cédric Amato, the head of a Paris naturist group, told the AFP news agency at the performance on Sunday.
“It is a way for us also get to talk about our lifestyle and our needs,” he added. “We need to break the social codes to be ourselves in a place like this and have a good time.”
The title plays on the French phrase “lu et approuvé,” meaning “read and approved,” which relates to signing documents.
It focuses on a brother and sister who visit their parents’ beach house, only to discover that no one in the vicinity is dressed.
The audience were reminded to put their clothes back on before heading outside after the show, and were asked to bring their own towels to sit on for hygiene reasons, AFP reported. VIP guests were given microfiber seat coverings.
The idea for the play, directed by Pascale Levyn and written by Genéstia Giachino, came about thanks to an “innocuous conversation” between two of its creators, in which they discovered that they are both naturists, according to its Facebook page.
The creators claim the play is “the first performance of a nudist show, by naturists, for naturists.”
There are an estimated 2.6 million practicing naturists in France, and the show isn’t the first attraction catering to the crowd.
In June 2018, Paris’ Nudists Association hosted a giant picnic for guests to attend in their birthday suits – and they hope the event will become an annual tradition.
But leaving little to the imagination may not an entirely risk-free enterprise – the city’s first nudist restaurant will close for financial reasons in February, after serving diners in the buff for little over a year.