Belladonna is a story, which tackles a major period of transition in history, the passing of the medieval period into the renaissance. As every transition is full of chaos and renewal, there are many resemblances with our period nowadays. Therefore, Belladonna is at the same time a symbol for, and a symbolic representation of our times. However, it is in the first place a story about love (and the impossibility to be loved because of social structures), betrayal, knowledge (and the struggle between new values as cynicism and old values as charity) and fear. Spectators can identify with female-aspects of life, through a younger and an older woman.
SYNOPSIS (short version)
1482. Marie de Bourgogne rules the Burgundian country together with her Austrian husband Maxim, who's under the influence of Portinari, an Italian banker who brought the renaissance-mentality (luxury and design, but also cynical values as "with money you can do everything, even buying an army") into the court. Because Maria is blocking with her medieval values the influence of the banker on Maxim, Portinari poisons Marie by overdoses of the Belladonna-plant. For Marie's bastard daughter Finne (a lovely young woman, a “bella donna”, the daughter of young knight Van Kleef) is banished to a foolship (a floating lunatic asylum), where she'll meet a painter who explains her the meaning of the number zero and helps her to escape the boat. Finne will be found by Thritemius, a magician who tries to reactivate the traditional magic (Celtic) rites (in despite of the Catholic Church), with the help of Amanita, a 40 years old beguine. They just ended the initiation of a young Freshman (noviet) who has to stay for six weeks in a crypt, drinking some Belladonna-extract from time to time.
During a visit in Gent (a city where she can smell rebellion and resistance against the enormous waste of money at the Burgundian court) Amanita has met John (aged 40); a knight of the “Golden Fleece” who represents the past and still believes in the traditional values of knighthood. They felt in love and John stays in the beguinage. But John has “classical” ideas about the role of women, where Amanita (who can write and read the old works and magician books) wants her freedom. John feels expelled from Amanita's life when she starts (as Celtic tradition prescribes) digging a vertical shaft which will be her personal grave. When Finne is initiated into alchemy and mystical arts and stays also at Amanita's place, John feels that Amanita's love is divided and he wants Amanita the choose between him or Finne. Amanita chooses Finne (she prefers love and not aggressiveness) and John leaves the beguinage to conjugate Maxim, who is fighting the rebellion of the citizens of Gent. The citizens have taken Filips (the 5 years old son of Marie and Maxim who was sent to Gent to receive some education) as hostage. When Maxim's troops penetrate the city-walls, the citizens leaders decides to take the boy out of Gent and bring him to the beguinage, where he's pleased to find Finne (his half-sister) again. Although Amanita is furious because the citizens took a child as hostage, she keeps the boy with her.
Maxim beats the insurrection of Gent thanks to the new weapons he could buy with the money Portinari lent him in exchange of classical huge paintings and carpets. Van Kleef (Finne's biological father) took the side of Gent and is taken prisoner. Maxim wants back his son and John tells him Filips stays at the beguinage.
At the beguinage, they are building a "wicker woman", a frame (about twenty meters high) in the form of a human being, in which wild boars will be sacrificed during the harvest-home, a feast under Trithemius directions and during which some of them take Belladonna-fruits to obtain a trance.
Monks visit the beguinage. By night, these disguised soldiers under the command of John take Filips and reassemble all the beguines. Only Finne can escape. The soldiers release the wild boars out of the wicker-woman and chase the beguines and Thritemius into the frame where they are burned alive.
Finne went to Amanita's shaft. John finds her and pulls up the ladder. She will never be able to escape… But we may not forget the Freshman, sitting in his crypt. He comes out of this "womb", discover the shaft and will release Finne. He'll be her light. And that's what the name “Finne” means.
“Belladonna”: speelt zich af in 1482. Scharniermoment in onze cultuur: de middeleeuwse moraal vermengt zich met de renaissancecultuur. Het verhaal speelt zich af aan het hof van Maria van Bourgondië; en in een Begijnhof (dat het magische denken symboliseert).
De oude ridderwaarden vervallen en maken plaats voor het cynisme van het winstbejag en het goddeloze. Temidden deze wereld bieden enkel begijnen en een sjamaan een alternatief. maar zij worden echter uitgeroeid.
Hoofdpersonages: de bastaard dochter van Maria van Bourgondië, die verstoten wordt wanneer haar moeder overlijdt en opgevist wordt door de Begijnen die zich bezig houden met Keltische riten (ipv. christelijk geloof). Dit bastaardkind is geletterd en zal als enige (Eva-figuur) de heidense kennis overdragen, wanneer het Begijnhof platgebrand wordt.
U kunt op aanvraag (mits motivatie) het scenario bekomen.