Hugo Claus (2)

Here's the obituray which appeared in the International Herald Tribune :


Author Hugo Claus, writer of 'The Sorrow of Belgium,' dead at 78
Wednesday, March 19, 2008

BRUSSELS, Belgium: Writer Hugo Claus — an artist, poet, playwright and novelist whose books painted a scathing picture of repression and hypocrisy in bourgeois Flanders — died Wednesday by euthanasia, his wife said. He was 78.

Claus, who had Alzheimer's disease, died at Middelheim Hospital in Antwerp. "He himself picked the moment of his death and asked for euthanasia," not wanting to extend his suffering, his wife, Veerle De Wit, said in a statement.

De Wit did not say how the euthanasia, which is legal in Belgium, was carried out.

Claus produced some 200 works during his career but was best known for his classic, "The Sorrow of Belgium" — a scathing attack on social injustice, stifling family relationships and Roman Catholic repression in his native Flanders in northern Belgium.

The partly autobiographical work defined his career and shot him to prominence on the international scene.

Often writing out of anger and guilt, Claus relied on pitiless realism in his work.

"I am a person who is unhappy with things as they stand. We cannot accept the world as it is. Each day we should wake up foaming at the mouth because of the injustice of things," he said in a magazine interview more than a decade ago.

Claus also directed several movies and, as a painter, belonged to the Cobra group, centering on spontaneous, intuitive painting.

He was married several times, including to actress Sylvia Kristel, star of the 1970s erotic movie series "Emmanuelle."

Throughout his life, Claus was a reluctant Belgian despite the increasing adulation at home as one of the prime men of letters in the Dutch language. But he said being from Belgium — the laughingstock of the French and Dutch alike — was a great advantage to his writing since he never was restrained by any sense of grandeur.

Because of his ambivalent relationship with his native country, Claus often threatened to leave Belgium and lived in the Netherlands, France and the Greek islands before returning home.

By the time of his death, the whole nation embraced the master, and felt sorry about how the disease had hollowed his character.

"Almost no longer able to knead his words into clear phrases, create the right expressions and metaphors — it was something which cost him no effort for over 60 years. It was, I think, inevitable and unbearable torture," said Prime Minister Guy Verhofstadt.

"In each and every text and poem, he was an emotional beacon in our dark world. But I can live with the fact that he decided thus. Because he left us as a great glowing star, right on time. Just before he would have collapsed into a black hole," Verhofstadt said.

His death coincided with festivities accompanying the 25th anniversary of the publication of "The Sorrow of Belgium."

Born in the medieval city of Bruges in 1929, some of his youth can be traced back in "The Sorrow of Belgium."

Like the main character, Louis Seynaeve, Claus spent much of his childhood in oppressive Catholic boarding schools, where he rebelled against overbearing authority.

Claus did not get along with family members and repressed hatred for father figures became a recurring theme in his work. After World War II, he quickly left home and was forced to do menial work before making money from his budding literary talent.

At 18, he produced his first work, a collection of poems called "Short Series." The verses were rife with rebellion against the bourgeoisie and the constraints of Flemish society.

His fame grew quickly, especially after he wrote "The Wonderment" and "About Deedee" in the 1960s, touching on the themes of repressed homosexuality and family relations. Incest was at the heart of his 1970 play "Friday."

As a playwright, he first won recognition with the 1962 play "Sugar," a naturalist rendition of social conditions in a French sugar factory. Claus himself had worked at a sugar factory just after the war.

"As a boy working in a sugar factory, I found it so senseless that I left and decided never to work for anyone again," he said.

His survivors and funeral plans were not immediately available.

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Hugo Claus R.I.P.

After spending my whole day at the court being occupied with minors and adults being judged, upon my return at the office i learned of the loss of one my beloved authors, Hugo Claus... I'm real saddened by his passing. More to come perhaps the coming days... R.I.P. Mr. Claus!


21:54 Gepost door Lexman in Boeken | Permalink | Commentaren (1) | Tags: hugo claus |  Facebook |


Glenn Gould

BBC Radio 4 broadcasted a documentary on Glenn Gould called "Gould's Mind". You can listen at an MP3 of it here. Enjoy!

10:45 Gepost door Lexman in Muziek | Permalink | Commentaren (0) | Tags: glenn gould |  Facebook |


Karlsruhe 1957

Thought i'd share this beautifull picture with you :



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Max Roach Memorial

The University of Massachusetts Amherst wil be presenting a day long tribute to Max Roach. It will take place on March 25th. You can read more about it here.

19:02 Gepost door Lexman in Muziek | Permalink | Commentaren (0) | Tags: max roach |  Facebook |


Buddy Miles R.I.P.

News8Austin announced the following news today : 

Buddy Miles passes away
2/27/2008 1:01 PM
By: News 8 Austin Staff

Buddy Miles was 60.  
Buddy Miles, 60, died Tuesday night in Austin with his family at his side.

He was the drummer and co-founder of the legendary Band of Gypsys with Jimi Hendrix. Miles worked with some of the biggest names in music, including Stevie Wonder, Barry White, David Bowie and George Clinton.

Miles recorded and produced the California Raisins commercials.

A tribute show will be announced shortly and all are welcome to attend.

23:09 Gepost door Lexman in Muziek | Permalink | Commentaren (0) | Tags: buddy miles, jimi hendrix |  Facebook |


Teo Macero R.I.P.

Teo Macero passed away. You can read Ben Ratliffs obituary in the NYT here. Will have to listen to hose Miles stuff again, wht a punishment! R.I.P. Teo!

14:33 Gepost door Lexman in Muziek | Permalink | Commentaren (0) | Tags: teo macero |  Facebook |