I am always proud of my students, especially when I see that they are making good progress due to our common efforts. This week, I am particularly proud of one of my lovely students who successfully completed her final Swiss naturalisation interview on Monday. Toutes mes félicitations, Margaret*!
As a high profile business professional and mother of a young teenager, Margaret’s busy schedule didn’t allow her to attend traditional face-to-face classes. Her regular business travels and limited amounf of free time meant that she needed a flexible, but efficient learning method focused on her very specific needs.
Over the past four months, Margaret and I have been working together to improve her French conversation. She decided to contact me as she had been living in Geneva for more than 10 years and felt it was time to perfect her already very good French skills in order to get rid of some bad habits, once and for all.
Four weeks ago, following a discussion we’ve had during one of our lessons, she decided to apply for her Swiss naturalisation. This meant that she had to pass several exams to test her knowledge on the Swiss history, geography, politics, and French language level. Proving that she could master level A2 in French wasn’t difficult for her, but she was a bit nervous about the final Swiss naturalisation interview, which would require her to give her opinion on several current Swiss news and to explain how well integrated in the Swiss society she had become over the years.
One of the frequently asked questions is to “cite and explain three current hot topics on the Swiss news”. To ensure that Margaret would be super prepared to successfully answer that question, we researched and talked about various topics: L’escalade, les Fêtes de Genève, le CEVA, l’affaire Tariq Ramadan, le ministre genevois Luc Barthassat, le tunnel du Gothard, le ski alpin et même la fondue au fromage!
During our lesson last Wednesday, I asked Margaret if she would like to accompany me to see La revue genevoise, as I thought it is THE event to attend to truly and finally become Suisse romand!
Never did we expect to have so much fun in one evening!
*To respect my student’s privacy, I will refer to them as Margaret.
La revue genevoise, c’est quoi?
Every year since 1892, La Revue, a sketch comedy special, takes place at the elegant Casino-Théâtre, on rue de Carouge. This cabaret style show features sketches satirizing the past year’s events which took place in Geneva, but also all around Switzerland, combined with hilarious, yet really beautifully sung and danced acts performed on well-known songs.
I can’t remember the last time I laughed as much as I did last Friday! I really believe that this fantastic comedy show is comparable in quality to what is being presented in London and NYC.
If you want to better understand the humour and culture of the Romands (French speaking Swiss), you ought to see this fantastic show! If you are of level B1 and above, you will understand most of the sketches’ content. If you are not familiar with the current Swiss affairs and are of level A1 or A2, you will probably struggle a bit, but the songs, costumes, choreographies, and the electric atmosphere in the hall will definitely make up for it.
One thing is for sure: you will laugh and spend a lovely evening!
Le patrimoine culturel immatériel de la Suisse
Saviez-vous que La Revue vient d’être inscrite (just got enrolled) au « patrimoine culturel immatériel de la Suisse » par la Confédération ? (Switzerland’s Immaterial Cultural Heritage)
Vos rires (laughters) ne sont donc toujours pas (still not) déductibles de vos impôts (tax deductible), mais ils sont à présent (from now on) adoubés (knighted) par la Confédération !
480 rires par soir, minimum!
Le scénariste et producteur genevois Pierre Naftule incarne l’esprit (personifies the spirit) d’un grand show comique qui fait courir le Tout-Genève depuis le 13 octobre dernier.
Ses spectacles respirent (exude) l’amour du théâtre, Broadway étant (being) sa passion de longue date (long-time). En effet, quelques jours avant sa première Revue en 1990, il avait fait une virée (trip) à New York, juste pour le plaisir de voir des beaux spectacles parfaitement ficelés (perfectly put together).
Naftule croit que ce n’est pas parce que la salle du Casino-Théâtre est petite qu’il faut transiger (compromise with) sur le choix des musiques, des costumes ou des décors (sets). Selon lui (according to him), tout doit être de qualité, même si ça a un coût.
Bien malheureusement (quite unfortunately), Pierre Naftule signe sa dernière «Revue». Si vous n’avez jamais assisté (if you have never attended) à l’une de ses Revues, allez-y sans tarder (without delay) avant qu’il ne soit trop tard (too late)!
Extrait de “La Revue 2016”
I hope you are now even more inspired to discover more about the culture of French speaking Swizterland!
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