History: the epithet is a must! History by its theme: the capture of Troy and the loves of Dido and Aeneas. In spite of his first two chess lyric, Hector Berlioz wanted to persevere in the way of the opera, and he meant to do it alone. While steeped in ancient culture, he saw in The Aeneid of Virgil a subject admirable, that he felt able to adapt it for the stage and the voice. Which act: Trojan horses he composed the music but also the libretto, faithful to the image of the absolute artist, in order to the rest of the world, which he had always stuck to the skin.
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History by the format: five acts, nine tables, nearly six hours of music. A first part, bellicose and dramatic: The Taking of Troy ; a second, more languid and sentimental: Les Troyens à Carthage . At the heart of the latter: one of the most beautiful duets of love in all of French music, “Night of intoxication and ecstasy infinite”. As we know, Les Troyens are not without their lengths; but they are constitutive of the very rhythm of the opera monster (in the literal sense of the word) and sublime, which cannot be saucissonné and cannot breathe, deploy only if it is heard in its entirety.
History, finally, by its presence this year in Paris. Thirty years ago, it is with Les Troyens of Berlioz that was inaugurated in the giant freezer opera commissioned by François Mitterrand, the architect Carlos Ott. New fortress on the place de la Bastille, the opera saw the light of day in the wake of the celebrations of the bicentenary of the French Revolution. While a left caviar froufroutante had been given an appointment around the sphinx to francisco to sing the genius of Berlioz, and the joys of the guillotine.
This is three decades that the Bastille has seen the light of day, and Les Troyens are here to blow out his candles. Regardless of this anniversary (the real inglorious). We rejoice however to find, on a scene of the real dimensions of the work, one of the operas of the most crazy of all French music.
Dmitri Tcherniakov is sure to intelligently abuse the booklet sometimes clumsy concocted by Berlioz. Philippe Jordan has all the qualities to ignite this partition river and coruscante, it is necessary to stretch to the extreme in order not to lose the attention of the public. But when Berlioz is great, it touches the sublime.
Finally, the distribution foregrounds the voices and temperaments tragic: the Cassandra of Stéphanie d’oustrac, the Hecuba of Véronique Gens, the Chorèbe of Stéphane Degout, and then the duo central: the Dido Ekaterina Semenchuk (replacing Elina Garanca) and the Aeneas of Bryan Hymel (alternating with Brandon Jovanovich). This is who we guarantee an evening full of sound, fury and emotions.
“Les Troyens” at the Opera Bastille. Place de la Bastille (Xi). Tel.: 0 892 89 90 90. Dates: 25 jan. 12 feb. 18 hPlaces: 15 to 231 €.