Ghelderode, Michel de
|born on||3 April 1898 at 08:55 (= 08:55 AM )|
|Place||Ixelles, Belgium, 50n50, 4e22|
|Timezone||GMT h0e (is standard time)|
|Astrology data||13°38' 29°19 Asc. 01°49'|
Avant-garde Belgian dramatist, writing in French. A prolific writer, he wrote more than sixty plays, a hundred stories, a number of articles on art and folklore and more than 20,000 letters. He is the creator of a fantastic and disturbing, often macabre, grotesque and cruel world filled with mannequins, puppets, devils, masks, skeletons, religious paraphernalia, and mysterious old women. His works create an eerie and unsettling atmosphere although they rarely contain anything openly scary.
Among his influences were puppet theater, commedia dell'arte and the Belgian painter of the macabre, James Ensor. His works often deal with the extremes of human experience, from death and degradation to religious exaltation.
His 1934 play La Balade du grand macabre served as inspiration for György Ligeti's opera Le Grand Macabre.
According to Oscar G. Brockett, the works of Ghelderode resemble those of Alfred Jarry, the surrealists, and the expressionists, and his theories are similar to those of Antonin Artaud. In nearly all of his approximately thirty plays runs his perception of human beings as creatures whose flesh overpowers spirit.
Jean Cocteau proclaimed: "Ghelderode is the black diamond that closes the necklace of poets that Belgium carries around her neck. This black diamond casts a cruel and noble fire. It wounds only the small souled. It dazzles others."
De Ghelderode married Jeanne-Françoise Gérard in 1924. He died on 1 April 1962.
Marin de Charette writes on CEDRA, quoting from the book "L'éternel aujourd'hui de Michel de Ghelderode", by Jean Francis. There, a letter by himself is quoted as "C'était un dimanche des Rameaux (...) .. Au moment où je venais au monde, les cloches sonnaient la messe de neuf heures..." (English: It was on the sunday before Easter .. At them moment I came to the world, the bells rang for the 9 o'clock mass.)
As it is customary that the church bells ring not later than 5 minutes before mass begins, time of birth is assumed as 8:55 am. Lescaut records 8.50.
Another quote is found in A. Jans, Michel de Ghelderode ange et démon, 1973: «Je suis né un dimanche matin, à l’heure où les bons bourgeois de la chaussée d’Ixelles sortirent pour répondre à la cloche les hélant pour la messe de 9 heures, à Saint-Boniface!» (I was born on Sunday morning, at the time when good citizens of Ixelles went out to respont to the bell calling them to 9 o'clock mass).
- Vocation : Writers : Playwright/ script (avant-garde dramatist)