01 Apr '20 to 17 May '20

Who Killed My Father


Young writer Édouard Louis (1992) is the greatest literary sensation in France since Michel Houellebecq. With his autobiographical debut The End of Eddy, he looked back on his tormented youth as a young gay man in the forgotten underclass of society: the north of France, plagued by unemployment.

Genre Theatre

The anger-soaked Who killed my father is written in the form a letter to his father. Louis found his inspiration in a visit he paid to his father after not seeing him for some time, finding him almost unrecognizable. The man had become ill and aged prematurely, the result of a life marked by alcohol, social deprivation, hard work, and an industrial accident. Louis explains this to the elite, for whom politics is primarily an 'aesthetic issue': they engage in politics that has virtually no influence on their lives. The underclass, on the other hand, is devastated by cutbacks in benefits.

Ivo van Hove: “A gripping story about a father who, at the age of fifty, is a physical and mental wreck because of the hard work in the industrial world of northern France. It is both a furious indictment of the political elite and a son's declaration of love. Édouard Louis also writes about how, as a young gay man, he was condemned as an outcast by his own workers' family. I'm writing a monologue for Hans Kesting based on this wonderful material.”

According to the French weekly L'Opinion, the book is read in the Élysée - the official residence of the French president. Louis' diagnosis would align perfectly with Emmanuel Macron's. The writer himself sees it very differently. "My book is against who you are and what you do," he tweeted to Macron. "I write to disgrace you.”


Édouard Louis
directed by Ivo van Hove
with Hans Kesting
scenography and lighting Jan Versweyveld
co-producer deSingel Antwerp
private producer Jeroen van Ingen and Jaap Kooijman, Bertil van Kaam


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