Ode to a Love Lost


Ode to a Love Lost

Toneelhuis / Benjamin Abel Meirhaeghe


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Ode to a Love Lost
Toneelhuis / Benjamin Abel Meirhaeghe

Ode to a Love Lost is set in the deep crater of a heart. Bathed in the afterglow of an intense love.

The starting point of this performance lies in Meirhaeghe's own personal love story. He made The Ballet with his then lover and muse in 2018. That mythologised relationship still fascinates Meirhaeghe. Think of love stories between Diaghilev and Nijinsky, Wilde and Bosie, Warhol and Basquiat and all other passionate relationships where art and life intertwine.

Run time 90 minutes
Genre musical theatre
Language Dutch

Ode to a Love lost

On stage, Meirhaeghe enters into an intimate artistic dialogue with performers Jelle Haen and Désirée Cerocién. He is accompanied live by Berlin singer-songwriter Finn Ronsdorf on soul and blues piano.

Ode to a Love Lost is an ode to decay and loss, but also a hopeful song. There is music in ruin, future in melancholy.

With a lost love as the engine, a deep crater as the landscape and a dual relationship with the norm, Meirhaeghe literally moves towards liberation.
Benjamin Abel Meirhaeghe created a furore as a director and countertenor in his own operatic musical projects (A Revue, Madrigals). His work challenges the classical repertoire: dancers become singers, singers become dancers. Meirhaeghe demands an unashamed access to great emotions while giving pleasure to semi-experts, he aims for a different kind of virtuosity. This is his first creation as a regular Drama House creator.


De Morgen

'His own heartbreak, which underpinned Ode to a Love Lost , takes shape in multiple perspectives. An eclectic mix of opera repertoire, jazz, blues and orchestral music can also be heard in the soundscape.'

Het Nieuwsblad

'Love is in the broadest possible sense. As vulnerable as it is menacing: that's Ode to a love lost.'


'Alongside snatches from Debussy's composition to Nijinsky's 'Faune', one long sustained sound is sustained again and again in an arc of tension that, in Wagnerian fashion, is never allowed to discharge. The tension of unprocessed loss and unknown future is brilliantly contained within it.'

De Tijd

'In Ode to a Love Lost, performing artist Benjamin Abel Meirhaeghe rakes together the pieces of his broken heart. His grief unfolds in images and music of beauty and stillness.'

Benjamin Abel Meirhaeghe

Benjamin Abel Meirhaeghe (1995) is a countertenor, performer and director of operatic and visual performances. In his creations, he mixes classical music with pop and contemporary scenography in his own unique way. Within his work, he often builds on the classical repertoire together with a diverse cast in which dancers sing and singers move. He often works with non-classically trained performers and transforms dancers into singers, or vice versa. Musical perfection and virtuosity are thereby challenged. For him, the theatre is an echo chamber in which old and new times can be brought together.

More about Benjamin Abel Meirhaeghe


directed by Benjamin Abel Meirhaeghe
by and with Mario Barrantes Espinoza, Finn Ronsdorf, Jelle Haen, Benjamin Abel Meirhaeghe
stage design and lighting Bart van Merode, Zaza Dupont
costume design Oumar Dicko
research Louise van den Eede
dramaturgy Kristof van Baarle
choreography coaching Hanako Hayakawa
vocal coaching Wouter Deltour
body coaching Sten Dielen
video Charles Dhondt
carpet design Victor Verhelst
stage Felix Deckers, Malique Fye, Maria Zandvliet
production Art Happens
production Toneelhuis
with the support of The Tax Shelter of the Belgian Federal Government, Casa Kafka Pictures Tax Shelter

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