Roland Gunst (concept), Benjamien Lycke (composition) en Mien Bogaert (libretto)
Kugoni Trio (music).


Flanders 2018. All attempts to create a multicultural society where people live side by side and enjoy each other, regardless of skin colour, religion or sexual orientation, have failed. The government’s integration policy turned out to be a catastrophe and suddenly – nobody knows why – a six headed monster crawled out of a bin somewhere in the outskirts of Brussels. Feeding himself on maladministration, lack of understanding and inflammatory social media statements, the ugly beast – quickly known as the Flemish integration monster – grew to massive proportions and soon enclosed everything between the coastal Yser plain and the Campine region in the east. Flandria, a Flemish noblewoman clothed in fine lace, the embodiment of Flemish identity, is driven to despair. However, at the critical moment a miraculous golden knight appears, just like in the 1302 Battle of the Golden Spurs. Flandria already considers herself saved when suddenly the knight lifts his visor and turns out to be a black man: the Congolese Prince King Lion I. Frightened by his skin colour, she hears that he wants to liberate Flanders from the Flemish integration monster by performing ritual acts.


FLANDRIA is part of a new corpus of folk tales, conceived by the Belgian Congolese métis Roland Gunst. The protagonist of these autobiographically inspired tales is the Congolese Prince King Lion I, the alter ego of Roland Gunst. FLANDRIA is based on Hendrik Conscience’s historical novel The Lion of Flanders – the Flemish national epic – and fulfills the prophetic implications of the Lion flag of Flanders (a black lion on a golden field). A Congolese prince with a Flemish background makes his Joyous Entry on Flemish soil, starts a love affair with Flandria, the patroness saint of Flanders, and founds a Flemish Congolese realm. FLANDRIA is an art installation by Roland Gunst with an integrated 25 minutes opera performance by Benjamien Lycke (music) and Mien Bogaert (libretto).


Staging: Roland Gunst
Composition: Benjamien Lycke
Dramaturgy: Mien Bogaert
Set design: Kachiri Faes
Costume design: Valérie Hellebaut

Flandria: Emma Posman
King Lion I: Roland Gunst

Instrumentalists: Kugoni Trio

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