« Good weather on Mon. Tues. Wed. to see NYC on Cole's "5th & Park" Walking Tour | Main

February 22, 2018

Iconic French Speaker Luncheons with Olivier Barrot

French Institute Alliance Française (FIAF)


Iconic French Speaker Luncheons

with Olivier Barrot


Tuesday, February 27  Jacques AttaliAn Unusual Destiny

Tuesday, March 27  Frédéric BeigbederLiterary Icon

Tuesday, April 24  Christophe Barbier: The Theater of Politics

FIAF · Le Skyroom; 22 East 60th Street

New York, NYFebruary 22, 2018The French Institute Alliance Française (FIAF), New York’s premiere French cultural center, is thrilled to launch Iconic French Speaker Luncheons, an incisive new series of conversations hosted by French journalist and TV personality Olivier Barrot. Over an elegant luncheon, Mr. Barrot will bring his unique insights into today’s most pressing issues as he interviews some of France’s greatest minds about their areas of expertise.

This season’s guests include economist, social theorist, writer, and political advisor Jacques Attali on Tuesday, February 27; author, literary critic, and TV presenter Frédéric Beigbeder on Tuesday, March 27; and journalist Christophe Barbier on Tuesday, April 24. All three events will take place at 12:30pm in FIAF’s Le Skyroom.

All talks will be in English.

About Olivier Barrot

Journalist, author, and television personality Olivier Barrot is a prominent voice in French cultural life. He hosts the daily literary TV program Un livre un jour on France 3 and TV 5 and teaches at Ecole polytechnique de Zurich. He also directs a series of public discussions about theater and acting with actors of the Comédie Française. He is the host of French Literature in the Making at New York University, a series of evenings with French writers speaking about their work.

This season, the Iconic French Speaker Luncheons series features:

Jacques Attali: An Unusual Destiny

Tuesday, February 27 at 12:30pm

Jacques Attali—the widely influential French economist, social theorist, writer, political advisor—will discuss his unusual life and work. Considered one of the top 100 public intellectuals in the world (Foreign Policy Magazine), Attali has led a multi-faceted life and has found success at every turn.

Jacques Attali was Special Adviser to President François Mitterrand from 1981 to 1991. He helped to found and was the first President of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development in London from 1991 to 1993. He was designated President of the Commission for the Liberation for French Economic Growth by President Nicolas Sarkozy in August 2007.

An unparalleled thinker, Attali has written over seventy books including texts on mathematics, economics, and sociology as well as plays, biographies, memoirs, children’s books, and novels.

Attali is also a university professor, investment banker, Honorary Member of the Council of State, CEO of the Paris-based international strategy consulting firm A&A, and President of the international non-profit microfinancing organization Positive Planet.

Frédéric Beigbeder: Literary Icon

Tuesday, March 27 at 12:30pm

French novelist, critic, TV personality, DJ, fashion model, and film director Frédéric Beigbeder is a true literary celebrity. Known for his wild side and his self-deprecating public persona, he is also a serious talent. Over lunch, Beigbeder will discuss his storied career, his approach to writing, and French literature.

An enfant terrible with a flair for provocation, Frédéric Beigbeder is known as much for his feverish coverage in celebrity magazines as for his distinguished career as an author and intellectual.

Born into a privileged family in Neuilly-sur-Seine, Beigbeder published his first novel, Mémoires d’un jeune homme dérangé, at the young age of 24. He subsequently worked as an advertising copywriter for various agencies including Young & Rubicam, an experience that would inspire his bestselling novel, 99 francs.

Alongside his advertising career, Beigbeder worked as a writer and literary columnist for French magazines including ElleParis MatchVoici, and GQ. He was an editor for Flammarion from 2003 to 2006, and co-founded two literary magazines, NRV (a pun on the word énérvé, meaning annoyed) and Bordel. Since 2013, he has been the executive editor of Lui, the legendary French men’s entertainment magazine.

Beigbeder created the Prix de Flore, which has been awarded to authors including Michel Houellebecq, Amélie Nothomb, and Christine Angot, and co-founded the Prix Sade. In 2005 he won the Independent Foreign Fiction Prize for his novel Windows on the World, and in 2009 he received the Prix Renaudot for Un roman français. Several of his novels have been adapted for the screen.

Christophe Barbier: The Theater of Politics

Tuesday, April 24 at 12:30pm

French journalist Christophe Barbier has been a major voice in French politics for over 30 years. An editor at L’Express from 1996–2016, the author of a dozen books, and recently, a stage actor, Barbier will share his unique perspective on theater and politics.

From composing a rap about President Emmanuel Macron to performing a headstand on a national television news program, Christophe Barbier is no stranger to the theater of politics.

He began his career as a political reporter at Le Point and on Europe 1 before becoming top political editor at the newsweekly L’Express in 1996. He was named editorial director in 2006, a position he held until 2016, and remains a member of the editorial team today.

Barbier hosted the morning news program on the Canal+ digital news channel I-Télé since 2011, before joining BFM-TV, France most-watched television news network, in 2016. He also makes frequent appearances as a political commentator on a variety of French television news programs.

Barbier has written over a dozen books on politics, including Les Derniers Jours de François MitterrandLa Comédie des Orphelins, and La Guerre de l’Elysée n’aura pas lieu.

Beyond his journalistic career, Barbier has directed over 60 plays and recently performed the one-man-show Le Tour du Théâtre en 80 minutes at the Théâtre de Poche Montparnasse. Barbier is the director of the Théâtre de l’Archicube, the theater company of his alma mater, the prestigious École Normale Supérieure.

About FIAF

The French Institute Alliance Française (FIAF) is New York’s premiere French cultural and language center. FIAF's mission is to create and offer New Yorkers innovative and unique programs in education and the arts that explore the evolving diversity and richness of French cultures. FIAF seeks to generate new ideas and promote cross cultural dialogue through partnerships and new platforms of expression. www.fiaf.org



Iconic French Speaker Luncheons


·         Jacques Attali: An Unusual Destiny: Tuesday, February 27 at 12:30pm

·         Frédéric Beigbeder: Literary Icon: Tuesday, March 27 at 12:30pm

·         Christophe Barbier: The Theater of Politics: Tuesday, April 24 at 12:30pm


FIAF, Le Skyroom, 22 East 60th Street (between Park & Madison Avenue)


FIAF Members $40; Non-Members $50


800 982 2787 | fiaf.org


212 355 6160 | fiaf.org  


4, 5, 6, N, R and Q to 59th Street & Lexington Avenue



F to 63rd Street & Lexington Avenue; E to 53rd Street & 5th Avenue

Twitter: @FIAFNY

Instagram: @FIAFNY

Facebook: Like facebook.com/fiafny


Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.

Verify your Comment

Previewing your Comment

This is only a preview. Your comment has not yet been posted.

Your comment could not be posted. Error type:
Your comment has been saved. Comments are moderated and will not appear until approved by the author. Post another comment

The letters and numbers you entered did not match the image. Please try again.

As a final step before posting your comment, enter the letters and numbers you see in the image below. This prevents automated programs from posting comments.

Having trouble reading this image? View an alternate.


Post a comment

Comments are moderated, and will not appear until the author has approved them.

Featured Video

SMART NEW MEDIA® Custom Videos



Throwback Thursday

Podcast Series