b. 1932, Buenos Aires, Argentina
Lavelli is known for his contemporary repertoire. Director of the national Théâtre de la Colline until 1996, he is also known for his direction of opera, and of many Fernando Arrabal works.
See also: theatre
b. 1946, St-Étienne
Lavilliers's long career started in the 1970s, when a visit to South America profoundly influenced his style. Like many of his contemporaries, his musical itinerary saw him play blues, rock-in 1976's Haute Surveillance (Close Watch), for example-reggae and salsa in La Salsa (1980). He established himself in the 1980s; exoticism and protest songs are his hallmark. Charismatic on stage, with his cultivated working-class rocker look, he is a genuine poetic and political animal who never tires of discovering new musical horizons or exotic experiences, as expressed in his 1994 album, Champ du possible (Virtual Horizon).
See also: rock and pop; song/chanson
b. 1887, La Chaux-de-Fonds;
d. 1965, Roquebrune Cap-Martin
Architect, urban planner and writer, real name Charles-Édouard Jeanneret
Le Corbusier, an avant-garde Paris architect of Swiss origin, was the leading French member of the worldwide Modern movement in architecture between the 1920s and the 1960s. His villa designs in the 1920s and 1930s (e.g. Villa Savoye, 1931), his books, his housing projects and his city plans (e.g. Plan Voisin, 1925; Algiers, 1930; Radiant City, 1930-) had won him world renown by the 1950s but his practical achievements in France were limited, owing mainly to state indifference and distrust. However, Le Corbusier's designs and theories were based on his rigid concepts of universal relationships between people and space, and these tended to produce standardized designs for mass housing and city planning. He began to make these systems more flexible after the war-his chapel of Notre-Dame-du-Haut at Ronchamp (1955), for example-but a big postwar reconstruction scheme at St-Dié (1945) was rejected by residents and officials alike. Not until the 1950s, when France launched a big wave of high-rise housing in the public sector, were slab designs set in open space, comparable to his unité d'habitation (built at Marseille 1947-52), widely adopted on new housing estates. The city of towers and motorways came under criticism from the 1970s, but Le Corbusier's immaculate and persuasive architecture never lost its reputation and continues to influence French students and architects at the end of the century.