Serge Denoncourt is known as a true man of the theatre with more than 80 productions to his credit, but he was planning to study medicine when he decided at the age of 18 to audition for the theatre program at a Montreal college called CEGEP Lionel-Groulx. He was accepted, and when he graduated in 1983 he started his career as an actor. In 1987 he demonstrated his inventiveness as a director for the first time, with the play Grand et Petit, by Botho Strauss.
Cofounder of the Théâtre de l'Opsis in 1984, he has explored the great classics: Molière, Corneille, Gorky and the modern repertoire – Botho Strauss, Bertolt Brecht, Howard Barker – with equal interest. In the Chekhov cycle produced with Opsis in 1999, he added bits and pieces of the actors’ conversations and musings during rehearsals to the Russian author’s text of The Seagull to create the highly acclaimed Je suis une mouette (non, ce n'est pas ça), an original play that carried on a dialogue with itself and with today’s theatre.
He breathed new life into the Théâtre du Trident in Quebec City as the company’s Artistic Director from 1994 to 1997. He directed several Quebec plays, notably Les Feluettes (2002) by Michel Marc Bouchard, which he remounted at the Espace GO 15 years after its creation.
Serge Denoncourt is steeped in theatre tradition and known for the visual beauty of his shows, which are typically marked by heightened imagery, vivid use of color and a deep examination of subtext. A versatile artist, Serge also stages operas and even delves into the world of variety shows: He directed the Italian quick-change artist Arturo Brachetti’s show, developed the artistic and visual concept of a show by the Italian singer Eros Ramazzotti and in 2003 re-mounted the Quebec musical Pied de Poule that he first directed in 1991. The same year he was the acting coach for three episodes of the Cirque du Soleil TV series Solstrom.
With CRISS ANGEL Believe Serge has sought to return a sense of nobility to magic. “I don’t like magic shows in general,” he says. “They lack emotion and any sense of a storyline. I took on CRISS ANGEL Believe from the position of one who doesn’t like those kinds of shows because they treat magic as an end in itself. My aim here is to take magic – and Cirque du Soleil – in a completely different direction.”
Serge Denoncourt was born in Shawinigan, Quebec in 1962.