A battlefield filled with dreams and emotions. This is how Luc Petit imagined Inferno, the opening show for the commemorations of the Bicentenary of the Battle of Waterloo.
Seeking inspiration from the poem ‘L’expiation’ by Victor Hugo to tell the story and construct the set, he transported the 12 000 members of the audience, sitting in an open-air theatre, into the heart of the fighting’s inferno and the poetry of the show. On a 170-metre long stage (and) appearing out of a wheat field, 300 re-enactors, some 50 horses and 150 performers recreated the Emperor’s final battle in a dream-like atmosphere. Pouring out of a fiery lion’s mouth to the sound of some hundred drums and bagpipes, foot soldiers, artillerymen and cavalrymen on horseback took their positions and participated in the giant game of chess that Napoleon and Wellington were actually playing in front of the awestruck audience. Gradually, during the night, while the sound of guns and canons rang out, the dancers and firework displays lit up the Morne Plaine, so dear to the poet, and the sky of Waterloo turned red and gold.
Conception and show direction: Luc Petit
Production: VO Communication, Verhulst Events and Partners and ASBL Bataille de Waterloo 1815
Pictures: Davis Plas
Video : Laurent Tixhon
With the participation of Bernard Yerlès in the role of Victor Hugo and the violinist Grégoire Dune