Les Médiévales at La Roche-Posay

 April 2008


The Middle Ages comes to the ancient medieval city of

La Roche-Posay

during the last weekend of April

 

Allez - Version Français

 

The first event of "Les Médiévales" at La Roche-Posay has been a huge success. It was organised by the ateliers Melusine et Chevan, and by Agence Kémys for the Mayor of La Roche-Posay.   It was promoted and sponsored by the town of La Roche-Posay, the Conseil Generale de Vienne and Casino of La Roche Posay. Many associations and businesses as well as individuals offered their assistance and support.

About 15 to 20 companies participated in this magnificent event.  They are professional artistes specialising in Medieval Spectaculars.  Also about  200 adults and children from  La Roche-Posay and villages and hamlets surrounding this medieval town volunteered  to participate  and assist in the practical organisation of the street theatre and provision of meals for the participants.

 A large number of people came to watch the invasion of the medieval city. People watched people.

Medieval tents formed an encampment in the town square. For nearly three days there was dancing and music with parades and spectacles. The re-enactments, events and activities happened in the medieval streets of the old town, through the gateway leading to the bridge across the River Creuse, outside the ancient church and near the 12th century dungeon.  .

Children joined the plague-infested beggars as they pleaded for nourishment and water to heal their sores.

The different parades processed to the fountain, the source of the healing waters, where the noisy plague-infested beggars and peasants bathed to heal their skin. The entourage of the court of Baron de Livry processed in dignity. The priests and gentry were led by the knights in armour and by the flag throwers who in turn were heralded by the sackbuts and percussion. All were protected by the giant knights in armour.

The Beggars and the Peasants were led by their

leader, "le Roi Des Gueux".

The Archers practised shooting targets with their crossbows.

The Knights demonstrated the techniques of using fire-arms and munition and launched the trebuchet.  

The forge heated metal for the shields and swords.

 

Armoured soldiers fought in combat.

Mélusine and Chevan the weaver tended their sheep. The apothecary prepared her potions and explained how different plants can help to heal the body, especially the mind and the skin.   Troubadour musicians played the hurdy-gurdy, bagpipes, and percussion whilst dancers danced.

A young lady and a young girl called Mélissande played soothingly on the harp.

A nocturnal display of fire-eating and fire-juggling was performed in the outer courtyard of the dungeon, and this was followed by a Bal Mediaeval in the Salle de Fêtes. Children as well as adults enjoyed dancing to the music.  The spectacular festivities of the weekend culminated in a tournament of the Baron de Livry. After the teams had fought and lost or won, the children of the town were invited to take arms and fight against the knights.

Sadly, the knights lost and the children were the victors in battle!

The knights took rank and marched away ... they hope to return again next year!

    La Roche-Posay is an ancient spa town whose thermal waters are famous for healing problems with skin conditions.  Thankyou to everyone.