Opera in four acts. French libretto by Pierre-Louis Moline. Version reworked by Hector Berlioz. Premiered on 19 November 1859 at the Théâtre-Lyrique.
Amour, the messenger of the gods, tells Orpheus that he may descend to the underworld and return with EUrydice. His singing has the power to appease the Furies and animate the blessed Shadows. Yet, his voice cannot reassure Eurydice who despairs of the feigned indifference of Orphus, put to the test by Jupiter.
Orphée et Eurydice shook up Europe of Enlightenment. Berlioz, a worshippper of Gluck, achieved a synthesis of the Italian and original French versions for Pauline Viardot whose voice could revive the vanished art of castrati for the romantic public. The beauty of the work owes as much to the intendity of the exchanges as to the power of the orchestra and the spectacular implication of the choir.
Raphaël Pichon conducts the opera of operas and Aurélien Bory displays the giddiness of the mental and supernatural spaces traveled by Orpheus and beyond.
Orphée, Jess Dandy
Eurydice, Hélène Gilmette
Amour, Lea Desandre
Raphaël Pichon, music direction
Aurélien Bory, staging and scenery
Pierre Dequivre, scenery
Manuela Agnesini, costumes
Arno Veyrat, lights