L'Homme de La Mancha
4 October 1968. At La Monnaie in Brussels, the American musical Man of La Mancha – with book by Dale Wasserman, music by Mitch Leigh and lyrics by Joe Darion – premieres, translated to French by none other than Jacques Brel, with Brel himself in the lead role. Ten years later, on 9 October 1978, the world-famous Brussels chansonnier dies. Only once throughout his impressive career does Brel adopt the work of other artists: for L’Homme de La Mancha. Because he loves the musical so much, and strongly identifies with Cervantes’ legendary hero Don Quixote.
Half a century later. KVS, La Monnaie and Théâtre de Liège unite to translate Cervantes’ and Brel’s masterpiece to the city of tomorrow and today. Michael De Cock and Junior Mthombeni direct a worthy gang, including lauded Brel-performer Filip Jordens, soprano Ana Naqe and actor François Beukelaers, supported by the La Monnaie orchestra and some of their finest singers. Bassem Akiki conducts.
An ode to Brel and to Brussels, to imagination, to poetry and to the impossible dreams that our times so yearn for.