Merwane received a grant to help him finance his studies at the Théâtre National de Rennes.
What is your artistic background?
In 2017, I played in Nos Désirs, Raphaël Lefevre's first film. Through Nos Désirs, by experiencing the game and the cinematic experience as a whole, I knew that this was what I was going to do with my life. The same year, while I was working in a fashion store in Marseille, I auditioned for Act I, a program of three workshops spread over one year, with artists from the stage world. At the end of the program, there was a public performance in Paris. In Act I, I learnt about the program of the new school of the National Theatre of Brittany and its competition, directed by Arthur Nauzyciel. I immediately wanted to enter this school, so I took and passed the competition in 2018. I am now in my third year and I will finish my training in 2021. During these three years, I worked with artists such as Phia Ménard, Gisèle Vienne, Damien Jalet, Laurent Poitrenaux, Arthur Nauzyciel, Patric Chiha, Pascal Rambert, Guillaume Vincent, Julie Duclos, Yves Noël Genod and many others, all very important in my development.
How do you see your profession today?
I try to free myself as much as possible from a defined viewpoint. I try, whatever the experience, to remain in a state of discovery. Looking at a profession is too limited for me: the trade or profession in the sense that I get paid. I want precisely to free myself from any preconceived ideas and to veer towards surprise. I try to look beyond labels and limits that our predecessors have defined all over the place. I have the same view for an actor, a cook, a dancer, a baker, a fisherman, it's all the same for me, it all depends on the human being I'm thinking about in the moment.
How do you see yourself in five years? In 10 years?
I don't really see myself in five or 10 years, in any case anticipation bores me. I hope to still be alive above all, to make films, to play, to dance, to meet people, to continue to discover. As a child, it's cinema that allowed me to dream and believe in possibilities from somewhere else. To play is to live fully, at least to try to regain this freedom, it is like living perpetually in this other place which is nothing other than the here and now. This is therefore what I hope to continue to do and above all to share. To shout loud and clear, in my turn, that it is possible.
This interview was conducted in 2020
Photography credit: Julia Grandperret