Passion for the human body
The last image in Guy Cassiers’ staging of Wagner’s Ring was a stage-size reproduction of the sculpture Les passions humaines by Jef Lambeaux (1852-1908). This sculpture plays a central role in the performance Passions humaines.
In 1898 the bas-relief, Les passions humaines was officially unveiled. It is a monumental group of sculptures carved in white Carrara marble, the theme of which is good and evil under the watchful eye of death. Each figure and the writhing mass of bodies expresses Lambeaux’ passion for the human body, the sensual female and the virile male, and especially for movement.
Ever since the presentation of the design in 1889, the sculpture has created a controversy between enthusiastic liberals and angry Catholics who were outraged by its blasphemous and pornographic nature.
Writer Erwin Mortier has turned the controversy around the sculpture into a panorama of human dramas, social contradictions and ideological battles. With a bilingual French-Dutch cast, Passions humaines is a Belgian story in every respect.
tekst Erwin Mortier | regie Guy Cassiers | dramaturgie Erwin Jans | met Katelijne Damen, Tom Dewispelaere, Kevin Janssens, Marc Van Eeghem, Claire Bodson, Thierry Hellin, Vincent Hennebicq, Serge Larivière, Muriel Legrand, Candy Saulnier, Arieh Worthaler | video-ontwerp Kurt d’Haeseleer | productie Toneelhuis | coproductie Théâtre National (Brussel), Fondation Mons 2015, le manège.mons, Stad Antwerpen