Grand Guignol Orchestra

Grand Guignol Orchestra
Grand Guignol Orchestra
A book cover. At the top is a tricolored border near the top reading 花とゆめ Comics. In small print below it is ギニョール and 人形宮廷楽団 in larger print. This is followed by 由貴 香織里 and a framed picture of a man who smiles thoughtfully as he holds an accordion against a background of stage curtains.
Cover of the first Grand Guignol Orchestra volume published by Hakusensha in Japan on February 19, 2009
Genre Gothic horror
Written by Kaori Yuki
Published by Hakusensha
English publisher Canada United States Viz Media
Demographic Shōjo
Magazine Bessatsu Hana to Yume
Original run August 2008April 2010
Volumes 5
Anime and Manga Portal

Grand Guignol Orchestra (人形(ギニョール)宮廷楽団?, Guignol Kyūtei Gakudan) is a gothic horror manga series written and illustrated by Kaori Yuki (Angel Sanctuary, Godchild). The story is about a beautiful singer named Lucille and his orchestra who is invited to a town threatened by puppets that attack humans. The series began its serialization run in the Japanese monthly manga anthology Bessatsu Hana to Yume in the August 2008 issue.

At the 2009 New York Anime Festival, Viz Media announced that it had licensed the series.



The Royal Court Orchestra

Lucille (ルチル Ruchiru?)
The beautiful singer (a philomela) of the Royal Court Orchestra. With a tuning fork to amplify the sound waves of his voice he can destroy the guignols that terrorize the cities in which he is requested to visit for a sum of money. Although his singing is beautiful and heart moving it is also deadly depending on how it is sung for guignols and humans alike. He was once the nominee for Queen-ship but because he left Cordie had to take his place, because he still believes that a Holy Song exists in the world and he is determined to find it.
Despite his attempts to save people from guignols, Lucille is despised in his own country because the people around him tend to die. Additionally, he once rebelled against his sister, and later pleaded for his life and showed his devotion by killing the entire Orchestra. As a result, Cordie hates him passionately, but he still loves her. He has similarly difficult relationships with Morion and Spinel.
Lucille is very childlike and crafty at times, but sometimes his greed carries him into impossible situations. He also looks very feminine, to the point that people often mistake him for a woman and men often hit on him (much to his disgust). He seems to have a special fondness for the tomboyish Eles, bordering on romantic attraction.
As of Chapter 11, he was infected with the guignol virus and became ill and deranged for a short time. However, his body is very resistant to the Guignol virus, and it turns out he was actually given the antidote.
Kohaku (コハク Kohaku?)
The violinist of the Royal Court Orchestra. Kohaku is an impatient and rude man who usually resolves things with violence and has a wide sadistic streak (especially where Lucille is concerned). He carried with him many weapons such as knives and guns all which are hidden in his clothing. A scar runs on his face near his right eye, from when the princess of a town turned into a guignol and bit him. The advanced medicine of the Court allowed him to remain mostly human. His right eye pains him when guignols are near.
Gwin "Gwindel" (グィンデル Guwinderu?)
The cellist of the Royal Court Orchestra. The only character who talks very little (But when snaps, he's quite the scary young man) but plays a big role in the series. His weapon of choice is what looks like a Pickaxe and his incredible strength, although he also has a pair of "chainsaw scissors". He owns a pet hedgehog whom he is violently protective of.
His true name is Jadeite, and he was an artist in the pay of the Duke Rhodonite who specialized in carving grotesquely realistic guignol statues, including of his own daughter who was turned into a guignol by the duke. Berthie and Lucille caught him, and as punishment he was used as a test subject for guignol virus research, which led to him being given a pair of guignol arms. He holds a grudge against Lucille because of this.
Eles "Elestial" (エレスチャル Eresutiaru?)
The pianist of the Royal Court Orchestra. Elestial is the son of the Master of the city Toussaint, the first destination for the Royal Orchestra. Crippled from birth, he is completely cold towards the traveling Orchestra. The only surviving child of the city, all the children were burned alive when they became infected with the Galatea Syndrome including his twin sister Celestite and his mother. However, it was revealed that the real Elestial died, the person now posing as Elestial, is actually the twin sister, Celestite. The true Elestial died in an attack from the Guignols along with all the other children, but Celestite survived. To protect her from the people's wrath, her father had her impersonate Elestial.
Celes (now going under the name Eles) is sent by her father to join the Orchestra to spare her from the impending ruin of their city, and despite initially refusing, she ends up joining them. Her piano playing has a magical effect that rivals Lucille's voice: it attracts the guignols and can temporarily restore some of their consciousness to them.

Other characters

Celes "Celestite" (セレスタイト Seresutaito?)
The daughter of the Master of the city Toussaint and twin sister of Elestial. Celes has the ability to play the piano so beautifully that her brother convinced her to play for the city. The playing caused guignols to become angry and attack Toussaint, killing all the children and few adults within the city's walls. Celes was therefore blamed for the disaster and thought to have been burned alive. In actuality, she is actually alive and well, albeit in the identity of her brother.
Heliodor (ヘリオドール Heriodoru?)
The Master of the city Toussaint who is hated by his people for his cruelty and uncaring attitude. On the day the guignols attacked Toussaint, Heliodor ordered all those infected to be burned and this included all the children. It is believe he burned his wife after she became infected, and forced his daughter to burn his infected son. However, Heliodor is more caring than he appears, since he arranges for Eles to be removed from the city before it can completely succumb to the infection. His ultimate fate is unknown, since he wasn't infected.
Vivian (ビビアン Bibian?)
The longtime caretaker of Elestial and Celestite. She lost her lover the day the guignols attacked and claims she doesn't blame Celestite for causing it. In actuality, she is keeping her guignol lover in a cage and secretly hates Eles for what happened, even trying to have the child eaten by guignols.
Nepheline (ネフェリーン Neferiin?)
Master of the territory of Red Beryl who resides in the city of Niobium. Nepheline is clearly insane, a misandrist and obsessed with a world where women are always smiling and happy. As a child he was disgusted by his father constantly beating his mother and the maidservants, and eventually he murdered his father with a shotgun. To his horror, he discovered that his mother and the maids all loved his father despite his abuse, and when they "betrayed" him, he killed them all as well.
As an adult, he lived in a castle filled with maids whom he had seduced into becoming part of his experiments with the guignol virus, as well as the resurrected guignol corpse of his mother. He developed a massive crush on Lucille (believing him to be a beautiful girl), and tries to turn him into a guignol, but ends up devoured by his mother.
Spinel (スピネル Supineru?)
The only woman soldier in Nepheline's army who has an incredible strength for killing guignols and intruders in the Red Beryl, and who acts as a spy in the Rhodonite household. She is immune to the guignol virus, though it isn't known how, although she states that it doesn't work on "us Canaries".
As a child, she was much like Eles in that she was a girl who sneaked into an all-male monastery. Lucille took a liking to her despite her surliness and anger, because he saw that they were alike in that they were afraid. She has a voice that can mimic almost any person's vocals, but her natural voice is "cute" and "moe" which amuses people around her.
Morion "Morion Stilbite" (モリオン・スティルバイト Morion Suteirubaito?)
Lucille and Cordierite's cousin. When Lucille left he put Master Larimar to take over the official royal orchestra but dies under mysterious circumstances and Morion therefore took over. Morion changed his name to Count Morion Stilbite and is completely loyal to his cousin Cordierite.
Cordie "Cordierite" (コーディアライト Kodiraitu?)
Lucille's little sister whom he left behind along with his cousin Morion. Cordie has always been jealous of her brother's beauty and compares him to her mother who was Queen at the time. Cordie feared becoming the Queen of Epidote due to the fact that her mother was beautiful and young but cold and destructive. Lucille meets his sister later on and she is now Queen Gemsilica of Epidote who has only hatred for him now.
Much of Cordie's thoughts seem to revolve around her hatred of her brother, and the fact that she had to become ruler of the country instead of him. She will do virtually anything to hurt him, including threatening the lives of his companions and forcing him to fight Morion. She is extremely cold, cruel and vindictive even to the people who love her.
Cook "Cookiete" (クーク石 Kukitu?)
The butler of Cordierite, Lucille and Morion who remains loyal to the two after Lucille leaves. He does not hold Lucille's past actions against him, and even helps Eles sneak into the queen's chambers.
Berthie "Berthierite" (ベルチェ Beruchie?)
The Piano Tuner who was once a member of the Royal Court Orchestra. The Pianist to be precise. Berthierite is under the orders of the Senate to rid for them unwanted enemies under the name of Accordeur. With the mask of a cat and what looks like a long double sword he attacks the royal orchestra without mercy. He was thought to be dead by Lucille, since he slit his own throat during a battle with guignols. But was confirmed to be alive in Volume 2, although it is unknown how he was resurrected. There are black crack marks around his left eye and across his scarred throat, hinting that he is contaminated with the Galatea Syndrome; the contamination may be contained, since the Senate is implied to have very advanced medicine at their disposal.
Berthie seems to be rather capricious and sadistic, toying with Lucille's emotions and claiming that he only wants Eles as a sister-substitute instead of as a true friend, as well as tormenting Carnelian by pointing out that the Rhodonite family had discarded him.

Convent of St. Vienna

Garnet (ガーネット Ganetu?)
A sister at the convent of St. Vienna. Garnet is a beautiful mysterious women who claims to be a noble from the Rhodonite family, and is idolized by the other nuns as a holy woman. She is the only one that the nuns' guignols obey.
In actuality, Garnet was actually an orphaned boy named Carnelian, who was bought by the anti-queen Rhodonite family. They hoped that he would be able to surpass Lucille, but overtraining destroyed his voice and surgery left him a castrati unable to make love to Shinsha. The Rhodonites got rid of him by sending him to the convent, where he took over the production of the Adderly guignols. He is horribly injured by falling debris when the convent starts to collapse, and is carried off by Berthie. It is implied that he will be used by the Senate for some purpose.
Aventurine (アベンツリーン Abenturiin?)
The abbess of the convent of St. Vienna who first welcomes the disguised Lucille and Eles. An old smiling women with much darker secrets behind her, she is secretly creating docile guignols in the crypts of the convent, under the orders of the Rhodonite family. She is killed by Shinsha.
Shinsha (シンシャ Shinsha?)
A sister at the convent of St. Vienna who is the organ player at the church, and was formerly Carnelian's maid and lover. Under mysterious circumstances she is killed while playing the organ and her death is ruled as suicide, despite the fact that it was clearly murder. It is later found that she was impaled by a booby trap in the organ, and has been turned into an Adderly guignol.
Aqua (アクア Akua?)
A sister at the convent of St. Vienna who was obsessed with sister Garnet who is killed before Lucille and Eles arrive. She was found impaled on the chapel's crucifix.

The Senate

Richter "Richterite" (リチテライツ Richiteraitu?)
Part of the senate who spends his time playing cards with the other senators. Although he is just a child he is actually very old and is younger than Jasper his friend and competitor.
Jasper (ジャスパー Jayasupā?)
Part of the senate who also spends his time playing cards with the other senators and plays with his toys. Like the others in the senate he is much older than he looks but is older than Richter.
Meerschaum (ミアシャム Miatsuyamu?)
Part of the senate and the only girl in it. She spends her time drinking cocktails and beating the other senators in games of cards. It's hinted that she doesn't like the queen or Lucille and gossips about both of them.
Valentinite (バレンチナイツ Barentinaitu?)
Part of the senate who is seen playing cards with the other senators.


Duke Rhodonite (公爵・ロドナイツ Koushaku Rodonaitu?)
Duke Rhodonite is a rich noble who has taken Ruby (aka Spinel) as his young bride. Lucille suspects that the duke has a new virus in his hands and goes undercover. Rhodonite has one child, Carnelian, whom he bought from an orphanage and banished to a convent when his beautiful voice failed.
The duke is a cruel, selfish man who turned his past wives and fiancees into guignols when he grew tired of them, selling them at auctions. He also implies that he is sexually interested in Lucille because of his beautiful voice and face. He even stated that he would have raped Lucille if he had been a girl.
Telulu "Tellurium" (テルル Teruru?)
Gwindel's only daughter who was killed in order to become one of Duke Rhodonite's doll statues that surround his home. Telulu owned a pet hedgehog that is now cared for by her father, Gwindel as the only reminder he has of his daughter.


Written and illustrated by Kaori Yuki, Grand Guignol Orchestra began its serialization in the Japanese manga magazine Bessatsu Hana to Yume in August 2008,[1][2] and ended its run in the June 2010 issue on April 26. Hakusensha collected the eighteen chapters into five bound volumes, and released them from February 19, 2009, to August 19, 2010.[3][4]

Viz Media licensed the series and released it under its Shojo Beat imprint.[5][6] The first volume was published on October 5, 2010.[7] The series is also licensed in Germany by Carlsen Comics,[8] in Italy by Planet Manga,[9] in France by Editions Tonkam,[10] in Taiwan by Tong Li Comics,[11] and in Hong Kong by Culturecom Comics.[12]

Volume list

No. Japanese North American
Release date ISBN Release date ISBN
01 February 19, 2009[3] ISBN 978-4-59-218661-8 October 5, 2010[7] ISBN 1-4215-3636-6
  • Opus 1. "Overture For The Dolls Who Never Sleep I" (眠れぬ人形のための序曲 I "Nemurenu Ningyô no Tame no Jokyoku I"?)
  • Opus 2. "Overture For The Dolls Who Never Sleep II" (眠れぬ人形のための序曲 II "Nemurenu Ningyô no Tame no Jokyoku II"?)
  • Opus 3. "The Captive Nightingale I" (囚われの小夜鳴鳥 I "Toraware no Sayonakidori I"?)
  • Opus 4. "The Captive Nightingale II" (囚われの小夜鳴鳥 II "Toraware no Sayonakidori II"?)
A disease called "Galatea Syndrome" is running throughout the cities of the world and the people are left in despair as they wait for salvation. The Royal Court Orchestra travels to the cities that request them in order to give them a melody that will destroy the invaders around them. These invaders are "Guignols" who were once human until being bitten and infected in which they began to attack the innocent and spreading the virus quickly. Only the "Black Hymn Anthology" and the voice of a beautiful singer can bring peace to a world full of destruction.
02 July 17, 2009[13] ISBN 978-4-59-218662-5 February 1, 2011[14] ISBN 1-4215-3637-4
  • Opus 5. "The Queen and The Jester I" (女王陛下と宮廷道化師 I "Joô-heika to Kyûtei Dôkeshi I"?)
  • Opus 6. "The Queen and The Jester II" (女王陛下と宮廷道化師 II "Joô-heika to Kyûtei Dôkeshi II"?)
  • Opus 7. "Tragédie Lyrique I" (音楽悲劇 I "Ongaku Higeki I"?)
  • Opus 8. "Tragédie Lyrique II" (音楽悲劇 II "Ongaku Higeki II"?)
The Royal Court Orchestra risks traveling the roads filled with "Guignols" as they arrive to the cities that request for them. On their journey they are taken to the capital of the Queen Gem Silica and her army of soldiers. Lucille's past is still shrouded in mystery but only clues suggest he is responsible for a massacre and an attempt at the queen's life who he called 'Cordie' the name of his little sister.
03 December 18, 2009[15] ISBN 978-4-59-218663-2 June 7, 2011[16] ISBN 1-4215-3797-4
  • Opus 9. "Tragédie Lyrique III" (音楽悲劇 III "Ongaku Higeki III"?)
  • Opus 10. "Ma Chérie I" (マ・シェリI "Ma Shieri I"?)
  • Opus 11. "Ma Chérie II" (マ・シェリII "Ma Shieri II"?)
  • Opus 12. "Ma Chérie III" (マ・シェリIII "Ma Shieri III"?)
A new virus has surfaced as rumors but Lucille and his musicians investigate the Duke Rhodonite and are reunited with Spinel, the court's spy who is posing as Ruby the Duke's fiancée! Although the engagement party will take place soon, Lucille finds it difficult to perform with his musicians when the Duke is clearly aiming to trap him in his sickly plot.
04 May 19, 2010[17] ISBN 978-4-59-218664-9 September 6, 2011[18] ISBN 1-4215-3872-5
  • Opus 13. "Stigmate" (ステイグマ "Suteiguma"?)
  • Opus 14. "Quatuor Mosaiques I" (クオーター四重奏 I "Kuota Shijûsô I"?)
  • Opus 15. "Quatuor Mosaiques II" (クオーター四重奏 II "Kuota Shijûsô II"?)
  • Opus 16. "The Love Song of the Minstrel of the Court I" (宮廷吟遊詩人の愛の歌 I "Kyûtei Gin'yûkajin no Ai no Uta I"?)
Duke Rhodonite is killed, Lucille is accused of being the killer and is forced to escape as a fugitive with his orchestra. Along the way, information reaches Lucille about the Black Oratorio and the senate might know something about it.
05 August 19, 2010[4] ISBN 978-4-59-218665-6 December 6, 2011[18] ISBN 1-4215-3960-8
  • Opus 17. "The Love Song of the Minstrel of the Court II" (宮廷吟遊詩人の愛の歌 II "Kyûtei Gin'yûkajin no Ai no Uta II"?)
  • Opus 18. "The Love Song of the Minstrel of the Court III" (宮廷吟遊詩人の愛の歌 III "Kyûtei Gin'yûkajin no Ai no Uta III"?)
  • One-shot "Camelot Garden" (キャメロット・ガーデン "Kyamerotto Gāden"?)
Toward the final battle Lucille and his orchestra come face to face with Queen Gemsilica . The oratorio will resound for the curse of the black world!


Guignol (ギニョール Giniyōru?)
A person infected with the Galatea Syndrome. The only way to become infected is from a bite or a scratch from a guignol. The incubation period and transformation of those infected differs from person to person; the transformation makes the skin hard and limits the movements of the person. Because of the doll-like movements and symptoms of the virus, it is known as Guignol which comes from guignol, a French word referring to a puppet manipulated by human hands. Guignols are much stronger than the average human being and cannot be easily destroyed. They crave human blood and flesh, much like zombies.
Galatea Syndrome (ガラテイア症候群 Garateia Shoukougun?)
A virus that has begun to spread around the world. It is still not known how the virus was created or by who and has begun to evolve into separate viruses.
Addereley (アダリー Adarī?)
A new virus that evolved from the original Galatea Syndrome virus in which these guignols look and act like normal human beings. They are also known as 'Slave Dolls' who can function without any basic human necessities like emotions or materials. They will only respond to the voice of their masters, which is imprinted and sealed inside their minds. If the seal is broken the adderleys will spiral out of control and attack even their own masters. A cracked mark is either visible on some part of their bodies to identify them as addereleys.
Black Oratorio (黒の聖譚曲 Kuro no Hijiri Tan Kyoku?)
A book full of forbidden melodies that creates miracles for the user. One effect of a melody is that, when played, it can temporarily restore the memories and human souls of the guignols before they die.
Divine Lightning (神雷 Kami Kaminari?)
When an area is 70% or more is infected the Queen sends her Divine Lightning that will burn and destroy that area to the ground. It is used to keep the virus from spreading.


The North American release of the first volume sold 464 copies and appeared at the 256th spot on the list of the top 300 best-selling graphic novels for October 2010.[19]


  1. ^ "Angel Sanctuary's Yuki Launches Guignol Kyūtei Gakudan". Anime News Network. May 27, 2008. Retrieved 1 March 2009. 
  2. ^ Sarafin, Jarrod (27 May 2008). "Kaori Yuki Launching New Manga GAKUDAN". Mania. Retrieved 1 March 2009. 
  3. ^ a b "人形(ギニョール)宮廷楽団 1 [Grand Guignol Orchestra 1]". Hakusensha. Retrieved 6 July 2009. 
  4. ^ a b "人形(ギニョール)宮廷楽団5 [Grand Guignol Orchestra 5]". Hakusensha. Retrieved 29 June 2010. 
  5. ^ "New York Anime Festival 2009 - Viz Media". Anime News Network. Retrieved 2009-09-28. 
  6. ^ "Viz Gets Gente, Library Wars, Grand Guignol Orchestra, Nice to Meet You, Kamisama (Update 2)". Anime News Network. Retrieved 2009-09-28. 
  7. ^ a b "Grand Guignol Orchestra volume 1". Viz Media. Retrieved 29 June 2010. 
  8. ^ "The Royal Doll Orchestra 1" (in German). Carlsen Comics. Retrieved 27 August 2009. 
  9. ^ "Lucca '09: News Manga" (in Italian). Planet Manga. Retrieved 6 November 2009. 
  10. ^ "Éditions Tonkam Royal Doll Orchestra" (in French). Tonkam. Retrieved February 27, 2010. 
  11. ^ "人形宮廷樂團 1 [Grand Guignol Orchestra 1]" (in Chinese). Tong Li Comics. Retrieved 27 August 2009. 
  12. ^ "人形宮廷樂團 1 [Grand Guignol Orchestra 1]" (in Chinese). Culturecom Comics. Retrieved 27 August 2009. 
  13. ^ "人形(ギニョール)宮廷楽団2 [Grand Guignol Orchestra 2]". Hakusensha. Retrieved 6 July 2009. 
  14. ^ "Grand Guignol Orchestra Vol. 2". Viz Media. Retrieved 29 September 2010. 
  15. ^ "人形(ギニョール)宮廷楽団3 [Grand Guignol Orchestra 3]". Hakusensha. Retrieved 22 October 2009. 
  16. ^ "Grand Guignol Orchestra Vol. 2". Viz Media. Retrieved 16 May 2011. 
  17. ^ "人形(ギニョール)宮廷楽団4 [Grand Guignol Orchestra 4]". Hakusensha. Retrieved 26 April 2010. 
  18. ^ a b "Grand Guignol Orchestra Vol. 4". Retrieved 16 May 2011. 
  19. ^ "Top 300 Graphic Novels Actuals -- October 2010". ICv2. November 9, 2010. Retrieved November 16, 2010. 

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