Obits — July 4, 2014 at 4:38 pm

Annik Honoré, girlfriend of Ian Curtis and Les Disques du Crépuscule co-founder, 1957-2014

Annik Honoré

Belgian-born journalist and music promoter Annik Honoré — girlfriend of Joy Division’s Ian Curtis at the time of his death, the alleged inspiration for “Love Will Tear Us Apart” and the co-founder of the Les Disques du Crépuscule and Factory Benelux labels — died this week at the age of 56, according to press reports and associates.

Le Soir, a Belgian newspaper, reported that Honoré died Thursday “following a serious illness.”

Last night, Joy Division bassist Peter Hook performed in Nottingham, England, and dedicated show-opener “Atmosphere” to Honoré. He tweeted: “Hope she’s sat up there with Ian. RIP.”



Honoré and Michel Duval promoted music at Brussels venue Plan K, where Joy Division was on the bill opening night. Honoré and Duval would go on to found independent label Les Disques du Crépuscule, which released records by Josef K, Cabaret Voltaire and Tuxedomoon, among others, and Factory offshoot Factory Benelux, which was operated by Les Disques du Crépuscule.

Although Honoré has been portrayed over the years as Curtis’s mistress — particularly by Curtis’s widow, Deborah Curtis, and in the biopic “Control” — she insisted in an 2010 interview that her relationship, while “a love story,” was “a completely pure and platonic relationship, very childish, very chaste.”

Honoré  left the music business in the mid-’80s, reportedly going on to later work for the European Union.





  1. Scott Stalcup

    Well, there goes Hooky plummeting in my estimation.

    Spare a thought for Debbie and Natalie before you say something like that.

    • karaoke king

      What did you expect from that eternal nob end?

      • Scott Stalcup

        Not that.

        I knew Hooky had his moments, especially if your first name is “Bernard” and your last name is “Sumner,” but if that was him and not Ian on the wrong side of the sod, how would Jack, Jessica and Heather feel about someone saying that?

  2. Maybe, but WE don’t know the whole story… Hooky does

    • Scott Stalcup

      I’ve read Hooky’s book. I’ve read Debbie’s. I’ve read Tony’s. None of them saw the same car crash, it seems.

      Thinking back on my post, I’m sure Hooky’s heart was in the right place, but still comes off like “Well, if there’s an afterlife, maybe they’re finally schtupping each other silly!” Minimizing the window on Debbie for a bit, that’s still got to be a “blood draining out of the face” moment for Natalie.

  3. Youre right, Scott. The two I feel most for are his wife and daughter. Ms. Honore was only his girlfriend for a few short months.

  4. From

    ‘Tony Wilson describes a time very shortly to Ian’s suicide. Annik was incredibly distressed about the lyrics of the then unreleased Joy Division album Closer. She drove to the Wilson’s home in tears. She was was desperately trying to point out how real the dark, depressed and void of hope lyrics were. Wilson and his wife sat her down, gave her tea. It’s just art Wilson told her. Just art. “After Ian took his life,” quipped Wilson, “I wish I had fucking listened”.’

  5. Sumner – Hook: time is short. Make peace and embrace your legacy. All of this still matters.

  6. Steve Brown

    I was just thinking of her yesterday for some reason…Not that I ever knew her. I agree with Michael though – time is short and NO should bury their differences and sort themselves out for one last blast before decrepitude starts to bite. After all, ‘It’s creeping up slowly/That last fatal hour…’

  7. It’s a shame so many people—including, apparently, commenters here—think of Honore only as Ian Curtis’ ‘mistress’. Her work for Factory and Crepuscule deserves to be celebrated on its own.

    • So true. But, as we know, most of the commenters are boys, so….

      • and some of those boys have some axes to grind. I don’t understand it.

        • Scott Stalcup

          I don’t think Ian or Annik were in the right, honestly. Maybe that makes me Paul Bunyan, but I don’t care.

          To paraquote Henry Rollins, if you go through the ritual, standing up in front of your friends and family and telling an ecclesiastically sanctioned transvestite you will spend your life with that person, you don’t mess around, “chaste” though it their relationship allegedly was. You’ve said “I do,” so DO IT.

          And who cares if your chromosome pairing is XX or XY, if someone’s married, whatever they tell you the status of that relationship is, you run in the opposite direction, full stop. Sod your own feelings. There’s plenty of other fish. That one has a hook in its mouth if you didn’t notice.

  8. The strangest thing: Yesterday, the 4th of July, I decided to watch the Joy Division documentary DVD. After that, I got on Facebook and saw this article posted that she had passed the day before. I was stunned to read of her passing after just having watched her interviewed minutes earlier. Very weird.

  9. Gutterdandy

    None of anyone’s business, really, regarding what happened between Annik and Ian. Reading books, which are always biased in some direction or other, won’t give you any answers. Worry about your own lives and quit judging other people’s.

  10. penny_laid

    I just started getting into Joy Division last year after my best friend gave me a vinyl copy of Unknown Pleasures. Since then I’ve seen Control and Joy Division on the IFC channel numerous times and read Touching from a Distance to many times as I’m sure every Joy Division fan has. I always come away feeling that Annik and Ian were selfish assholes. I’m sorry she passed but that doesn’t mean I have to suddenly like her. She willingly went after someone else’s husband. Ian not only hurt his wife and daughter w their affair but committed suicide, the most selfish act. Why I feel strongly enough to post is after seeing this giant pic of her on my fb feed and reading comments about her and Ian being together now really pissed me off. I was glad to see posts about how hurtful this is to Debbie and her daughter. Even though all this bs is in the past, I imagine little things like this are still hurtfull…

  11. i agree with penny- while it’s sad that she died, she clearly had no regard for other people’s feelings. while she may have contributed to the music industry in some form or another, she was more or less an unknown groupie who went after a married man. Ian was just as at fault for wrecking his marriage as Annik was…that bit about their relationship being completely chaste is false. i also read comments on the internet about people defending Ian and Annik’s relationship, and i couldn’t believe the insensitivity shown towards those who disagreed with their opinions. Debbie Curtis has every right to be angry: her marriage fell apart despite doing everything she could to save it, and her husband committed suicide. the events may have happened years ago, but they never fully fade out of mind.

  12. john browne

    rip u could not in this world into your hands we commend her spirit

  13. Why no one of you did mention “TORN APART” book from Mick Middles & Lindsay Reade? Strange! I supposed all of you just want to remain desinformed. In this book, you can read Ian’s letters and better understand the romance. Just read it… How can you understand that Ian’s relatives kept contact with Annik until last april when she received a letter telling her that Doreen passed away. Strange too. Ask Ian’s sister how often her parents could see Ian’s daughter. You will be sadly surprised…

    • Scott Stalcup

      Whoa, Roland! Calm down, dear boy.

      Maybe no one mentioned it because they haven’t read it yet. I know I haven’t. I didn’t know it was out. IS it out stateside? The only book I knew of Lindsay being involved with was her autobiography and I’ve not read that yet. Trying to get through my last year of doctoral work, thanks.

      With the growing field of punk and post-punk scholarship, the books come fast and furious from the commercial and academic presses alike, esp. from Paul Morley. I’m sure I and many others will seek it out as it will add another eyewitness to the car crash that was the love triangle of Ian, Annik and Debbie.

      I don’t think I’ll be all that surprised though as far as Ian’s parents not getting to see Natalie though. Whether one’s kid is a dead rock star or otherwise, grandparents have fuck all in terms of rights to see grandchildren when marriages end.

    • t’énerve pas sur les connards. Ecris-leurs un livre s’ils savent lire…Bisous

    • Where did you get this information? Natalie mentioned in an interview that she always spent Saturdays at her paternal grandparents house.

      ” As a child I used to spend Saturdays with my paternal grandparents. When I was aged about 4 or 5, every week my grandfather would ask, “Who do we support?” Eventually I decided to support my mother’s team: Everton. My grandfather was disappointed that I didn’t choose City, and also pleased that I didn’t choose Manchester United. However, the Everton thing was not meant to be, I never even made it to Goodison.”

      Google it!

  14. At the New Order show in Milwaukee on the 3rd, Bernard simply said “this is for you, Annik” as they played Elegia.

  15. Leave her some peace with this story!
    At 20 years old we all had a mad love, a platonic love, a love with the power of youth, the only difference is that he did not commit suicide. I have experienced 30 years of friendship and her life.. is the life of a generous girl, positive , honest, healthy, just, discreet, modest, joyful, and all her life deeply in love with music .. MY Annik is here!. Rest in peace. (be strong Roland- bisous)

  16. DieselEstate

    How does h. know that the “relationship” between Honore & Curtis wasn’t platonic? I mean, do you actually know – or, does that just seem inconceivable? I’m curious.
    As for Peter Hook’s tweet, surely he simply meant, he hoped they’d meet up as friends do, because Honore’s first through the gates? After all, you could only take Tony Wilson in short doses and he’s been there seven (7! Already!) years now…..

  17. h has put the most ridiculous comment… Does he ever meet Annik? I’m not convinced! h needs to read something else than Debbie’s (toilet paper) book.

  18. I notice only Annik of Arc described the relationship as ‘platonic’ – in total contrast to everyone else!

  19. But you were lovers weren’t you?

    It was a totally pure and platonic relationship, very childish, very chaste… I didn’t have a sexual relationship with Ian, he was on medication that made any physical relationship impossible. I’m completely fed up that people doubt my word or his: you can say what you want, but I’m the only person to have any of his writings… One of his letters stated that the relationship with his wife Deborah was already over when we met.

    i love joy division, but i got the sense ian didnt actually treat his wife that well and wasnt particularly invested in her. he got married too young because he had nothing better to do, he had a kid because he had nothing better to do, and when his band suddenly became successful he found himself (like so many men who married before fame and money) with options, and a working class wife and kid were not it. i could be wrong but it seems his bandmates, while still trying to respect his wife to some extent or sympathize with her, side a bit more with annik, as though they thought she was better for him. also, if it was just a friendship, they dont seem to think there was anything wrong with it. they comforted and supported her after his death. people have emotional affairs too. i am sure deb had every reason to be pissed, even if they were going to divorce. he pretty much ruined her life. also, i thought i read somewhere- didnt he basically steal her (deb) from a friend? i am having trouble finding that reference.

  20. As is read Annik was the one and only person, who really was informed and cared about the textes of Ian! Isn’t this a wonder? Maybe she was the one and only for him, really at the same time???
    Why are people so angry for Annik, which was the one and only who really noticed what is going on in Ians mind? I think this shows a big connection between Ian and Annik, which noone else got. So Annik was interested in Ians personality. She was not a groupie as shown in the ‘Control’ film…she was not just chic, she was a serious human being i think and i trust her saying she felt platonic love. Furthermore we all dont know the real circumstances. As Ians wife said Ian often lied, so it could be true that he lied to Annik ehile saying it is over with Debbie? How must Annik have felt? Maybe Ian wasnt true enough with Annik and therefore he couldnt go to Annik and leave Debbie…maybe Ian was not true enough to see Debbie was not the one and only girl, as his life changed..he got another sight of life and Annik maybe touched this very deep with ger personality. Altough this is not cool for Debbie to be the loosing part it is possible that this was the truth noone in this time wanted to respect as citizens thought marriage is forever we no see that this is a human being made pact which cannot control feeliings between people!!!! Annik I really hope you are meeting Ian wherever you both now are. Ian sad in his song: LOVE will tear us….so it was his love for you Annik. Debbie did all she had to do as society wanted from a young women. And in my eyes Annik was a more modern type, searching for things on her own so similiar to Ian. Great respect for Annik!

  21. Glad to see that my lovely fellow Joy Division fans can have a heated internet debate without it turning into ludicrous trolled-out hate filled invective. I mean there’s still a fair bit of anger and accusation here in this comments thread…but I’d say overall you’ve all done very well. Bless. :-)

  22. Johnseesbeyond

    Wilson said he wished he’d listened to Honorè. But who, other than himself did he ever listen to?
    Far too self-important for me!

  23. Wow, I’m 25 years old and I have recently become obsessed with Joy Division. When I first heard Love Will Tear Us Apart, I was wine drunk taking a shower, and I instantly sunk/sat in my bath tub and cried. I’ve heard the song before but never listen like I did then. Surprisingly today I find out of the story behind it and it’s shockingly as mine. I just have to say, sometimes in life you meet/see someone and life is never the same. All ideas of wrong and right doing are non existent. You finally met someone who can see you. But due to unfortunate events and wrong timing y’all are doomed for to exist. The song captured my sadness so perfectly. Art/life is not supposed to be “right” it’s supposed to make you feel. I do believe Ian and Annik had a very special bond that should be respected regardless of ideas. I’m actually happy/thankful they found each other and got to spend time, even if it wasn’t much, with each other. I will always remember him, and cherish the times we had.

  24. Ian was reportedly taking drugs to control his seizures which made him impotent, so it’s not unlikely that his relationship with Annik was platonic. I’m sure being impotent would, at that age, have contributed significantly to his depression, and it’s not surprising he was attracted to someone who accepted him as he was

  25. So, I think I speak for many women here. The idea that Honore and Ian had a platonic, childlike, love is frankly much worse than if they had just slept together. The idea that your husband had some kind of deeper, spiritual connection with another woman is far more painful than just a physical shtup. I don’t know her or this situation but I’m sure she did many fine things with her life. But talking publicly about her relationship with a married man and constantly presenting it as part of your narrative is classless and uncool.

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