Shell Shock @ La Monnaie Brussels – Belgium



On the 24th of October I was lucky to attend the premiere of Shell Shock at La Monnaie in Brussels. Shell Shock is an opera composed by Nicholas Lens, choreographed by Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui and the libretto was written by no other than Nick Cave. It is basically organized in 12 poems or canto each of them telling the story / point of view of one war participant. A soldier, a mother, a child, a deserter, etc

Here is an example with the Canto of the Survivor.


It is truly a beautiful tribute to mark the 100th anniversary of World War 1 and honor all the men and women who have lost their life.

Pictures taken by Rick Vink. Please do not repost these pictures elsewhere. Thank you for your comprehension. Click them to see a larger version.





Since I think it’s very difficult to describe such an amazing piece of work, I will leave you with a few links and you can see some extracts of the opera on Brussels Nieuws. Also mark your calendar because starting November 14th, the opera will be streaming on La Monnaie for three weeks! Don’t hesitate to explore the site as they have a few interview with Nick Cave and Nicholas Lens.

Some links from the press conference that took place earlier last month:

 Nick Cave verovert de Munt (Dutch)
Ik ben voorbestemd voor het donkere en sombere” (Dutch)
The Birthday Party was ook al een soort van opera (short video extract of the conference in English)
Un Requiem pour la Premiere Guerre (French)
Les tristes (mais bonne paroles) de Nick Cave (French)


4 thoughts on “Shell Shock @ La Monnaie Brussels – Belgium

  1. Thank you, Valerie, for posting about the premiere of Shell Shock, and for including the links. The photographs from that night are lovely. The Canto of the Survivor is sad, and very Nick: “Sit down and eat your fucking lunch!”. I’m looking forward to listening to the La Monnaie stream!

    Thanks to everyone who posted reviews!

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