lundi, mars 22, 2010


It was in 2001 that I thought that I could become a teacher; an occasional French teacher. This is why I called my 2001 album "Easy Toog for Beginners". On the Japanese cover (L'Appareil Photo-Bis), you can see a classroom. This is a not a mise en scène, this is a real classroom, my own classroom, a little one. And the students were listening to me analysing Raymond Queneau's novel "Les Fleurs Bleues", while the photographer Mayumi Ito, very discreet, took pictures. I don't know why, on the way back by train, she started to cry… Was she desperate because of her photos? Or because of my dull lesson?

Before entering a classroom, my first encounter with teaching was private teaching. It was in 2000 and the Parisian school I sometimes worked for sent me to my first and unique client: a young girl who lived close to the Jardin du Luxembourg; a very chic area. I decided that I wasn't looking like a teacher at all, and found a pair of neutral glasses, a costume, plus an attaché-case. With some gel for fixing an ultra neat hair parting, I got close to my own imagination about what a teacher should look like.

As I entered my future student's courtyard, I started to feel more and more uncomfortable, like a disguised person, almost like an actor. But I decided to play my role, the role of a man playing the role of a teacher, which wasn't exactly the same as being a regular teacher. Life was ahead of me: I knew that my student's name was Auteuil. And suddenly I saw in front of the house, one of the most famous French actor: his name is Daniel Auteuil. Me, dressed like an actor playing the role of a teacher as I was facing a real actor, a famous one who could easily unmask the fake one I was at that very time...

In fact, everything went OK. The only problem was about the glasses; since I came with it the first time, I had to wear it everytime…

The last teaching experience was in 2003, in a suburbian highschool. One day, I had my photo as Toog in a very popular teenager magazine in France, where they asked me to propose a list of gifts for Christmas. Suddenly, I wasn't a teacher anymore for my students, an excellent reason for them to "foutre le bordel" . Before I entered the classroom, they wrote Toog on the board; they called me Toog during the classroom; they asked me to sing. My sudden fame made the teaching impossible... Eventually Toog asked me to leave this actor's dress and this was the end of a life period.