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Le sec et l’humide

Guy Cassiers

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In his small-scale project Le sec et l’humide, Guy Cassiers takes a closer look at the theme he explored in his impressive production De welwillenden (2016) after Jonathan Littell’s novel, The Kindly Ones.

While writing his lengthy novel, Littell also completed an essay entitled Le sec et l’humide in which he dissects the language and imagery he encountered in Fascist writings by the Belgian Léon Degrelle. In contrast to the creative, constructive, orderly, neat and dry approach of the Germans and all the pro-Germans, Degrelle paints horrifying pictures of the lax, slovenly, disorderly, tacky, muddy, smoky and humid Russian world into which the German adversaries are in danger of being dragged. Two voices are heard in the essay: firstly, that of Degrelle himself in the extensive quotes from his book La campagne de Russie and, secondly, that of an (objective?) commentator.

IRCAM - Institut de Recherche et Coordination Acoustique/Musique – in France offered Guy Cassiers the opportunity to experiment with sound and voice. By means of historical sound recordings from the archives, Guy Cassiers has the 'objective' historian tell the story of Léon Degrelle on a campaign in Russia and of his escape to Spain, but gradually the piding line between the narrator and his subject blurs: by subtly manipulating sound and voice, Cassiers interweaves past and present and Degrelle himself becomes the narrator. An intriguing and alarming transformation (courtesy of Johan Leysen’s deep voice). Here, too, the view formulated in De welwillenden is never far off: "You can never say: I will not kill. That is impossible: at most you can say: I hope I won’t kill."


Le sec et l'humide is part of The littell Project co-funded by the Creative Europe Programme of the European Union.



  • Guy Cassiers


  • Erwin Jans


  • Jonathan Littell


  • Filip Jordens

sound design

  • Diederik De Cock


  • Johan Leysen

assistance of the director

  • Camille De Bonhome


  • Toneelhuis


  • IRCAM - Institut de Recherche et Coordination Acoustique / Musique

with the support of

  • Cultuur Programma van de Europese Unie

All data

Er zijn geen aankomende activiteiten voor dit event.

  1. Tuesday 30 June 2015 — 104, Paris, Parijs
  2. Tuesday 30 June 2015 — 104, Paris, Parijs
  3. Wednesday 1 July 2015 — 104, Paris, Parijs
  4. Thursday 2 July 2015 — 104, Paris, Parijs
  5. Sunday 18 October 2015 — Temporada Alta, Girona
  6. Saturday 11 February 2017 — Festival de Liège, Luik
  7. Sunday 12 February 2017 — Festival de Liège, Luik
  8. Wednesday 15 March 2017 — Centre Pompidou, Parijs
  9. Thursday 16 March 2017 — Centre Pompidou, Parijs
  10. Sunday 9 July 2017 — L'autre Scène du Grand Avignon, Vedène
  11. Monday 10 July 2017 — L'autre Scène du Grand Avignon, Vedène
  12. Tuesday 11 July 2017 — L'autre Scène du Grand Avignon, Vedène
  13. Wednesday 12 July 2017 — L'autre Scène du Grand Avignon, Vedène
  14. Thursday 23 November 2017 — Le Parvis, Tarbes
  15. Friday 18 January 2019 — Palais des Beaux Arts, Charleroi
  16. Saturday 19 January 2019 — Palais des Beaux Arts, Charleroi

Nieuws over ‘Le sec et l’humide’

Article — 27 April 2017

The Littell Project : activity report

The activity report of The Littell Project gives a general overview of the project, its results and benefits and gives more detailed information about all activities and communicative actions, undertaken for the project.

Article — 10 March 2017

Guy Cassiers in Paris with Trompe-la-mort at the Opéra national de Paris and Le sec et l’humide at the Centre Pompidou

On March 16 th 2017 the Opéra National de Paris will present the première of Trompe-la-mort, a new opera after Balzac set to music by Luca Francesconi and directed by Guy Cassiers. The same week the Centre Pompidou in Paris is showing Le sec et l’humide, in which Cassiers continues his exploration of the theme of his impressive production De welwillenden (The Kindly Ones, 2016), after Jonathan Littell’s novel The Kindly Ones about the extermination of the Jews by the Nazis.

Article — 2 March 2017

"We can all become camp butchers"

“I’m a little afraid, to be quite honest,” says Toneelhuis director Guy Cassiers. We are standing under the iconic sign ‘Arbeit macht frei’ (Work sets you free) that hangs

above the entrance gate to Auschwitz concentration camp. “There’s nothing wrong with that,” says Christophe Busch, director of the Kazerne Dossin in Mechelen, Belgium, from where 25,800 Jews were deported to the camp. “Looking in the mirror isn’t a self-evident thing to do in this place.”

Article — 2 March 2017 is moving to Kazerne Dossin and to AP University College Antwerp, department of journalism

The websites and – both initiated and produced by Toneelhuis with support of the European Community – have been granted a continued existence: the first was officially transferred to Kazerne Dossin on 23 February 2015, while is moving to AP University College Antwerp. As a result, the two sites will remain available for those seeking contemporary background information and testimonies about exclusion, then and now.

Article — 24 July 2015

Le sec et l'humide: na het toonmoment in Parijs volgt Girona

Le sec et l’humide is een voorstudie die Guy Cassiers onderneemt  in het kader van zijn enscenering in 2016 van De welwillenden, naar de gelijknamige roman van Jonathan Littell. Begin juli werd het toonmoment van Le sec et l’humide rond Belgische collaborateur Leon Degrelle zo goed onthaald dat het dit najaar reeds naar het Spaanse Girona reist (Festival Temporada Alta). 

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Guy Cassiers / Toneelhuis / de Koe