- Ghelderode, Michel de
- (1898-1962)Michel de Ghelderode was the pseudonym of Adhémar-Adolphe-Louis Martens, who was born in Ixelles on 3 April 1898. A French-language playwright, he lived in relative obscurity until Fastes d'enfer (Hellish splendors ) was produced in Paris in 1947. Much influenced by Fernand Crommelynck, with whom he shared an affinity for medieval Flanders and the paintings of Bruegel and Hieronymus Bosch, he employed the traditions of Belgian puppet theater to achieve strange effects. Considered the most important dramatist in modern Belgian theater, Ghelderode wrote plays such as La Balade du grand macabre (The ballad of the grand macabre ) and Hop Signor! (1935) that feature grotesque caricatures of psychically injured people engaged in a never-ending struggle between good and evil. His repertoire features over 50 plays, collected in a five-volume Théâtre complet (1950-1957). Ghelderode died in Schaerbeek on 1 April 1962. A museum at the Université libre de Bruxelles features exhibits documenting his life.
Historical Dictionary of Brussels. Paul F. State.