The Struggles of the BeastPlay

La Belle et la Bête

La Belle et la Bête

2011

A fairy tale revisited, at once contemporary and timeless. A universal story in which the power of art, resilience and redemptive love triumph.

Her happy childhood brutally terminated by the death of her mother, a father made distant by grief and an absent older sister, Belle is set adrift. Painting becomes her means of survival and an outlet for self-expression, a way to unravel life’s mysteries and the last link to the art-dealer father she adores.

A little older than Belle, the Beast has holed himself up in his manor after his wife’s sudden departure. Grief-stricken, he hurls himself at a huge mirror, its shards leaving him disfigured. Deaf to the smallest sign of kindness or friendship, he thinks himself safely shielded from the world behind his monstrous shell. But then Belle appears, to deliver the last rose medallion her father promised his client.

Both narrator and character, the Lady, now well advanced in years, is unable to pierce the Beast’s shell despite the constancy of the secret, vividly imagined love she harbours for him. When at last she realizes that only Belle can revive the Beast, she relinquishes her impossible dream.

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