Third season of Stéphane Lissner at the head of the Opéra National de Paris but the very first for the great star Aurélie Dupont, as the new director of dance.
As usual, dance is predominant at the Palais Garnier with the outstanding ballet company of the Opéra National de Paris, known to be one of the best in the world. Transitioning from the most classic repertory to the most demanding modern choreographies, each performance is worth a visit. Great successes like Frederick Ashton’s La fille mal gardée or John Cranko’s Onegin are the tip of the iceberg alongside the evenings of the great choreographers of our time such as Anne Teresa De Keersmaeker or Pina Bausch. The sacred monster of dance is present twice this season with the beautiful Orpheus and Eurydice by Gluck and especially the famous Sacre du Printemps.
One of the highlights of the season is Stravinsky’s music, directed by Esa-Pekka Salonen. Another highlight is undoubtedly the splendid Jewels by Georges Balanchine, a masterpiece that is not so often on display. Choreography is not only the art of movement, it is also an art in motion, of which the many creations that enrich the repertoire are proof.
This season 2017-2018, the names of James Thierrée and Iván Pérez are at the top of the bill. We also retain the name of Alexander Ekman because this Swedish choreographer is invited for the first time to Garnier with Play, a new and highly anticipated performance.
The Palais Garnier welcomes dance but also presents beautiful lyrical productions that are just as impressive and deserve our fullest attention. Let us focus for a moment on a series of song recitals that offers the greatest modern voices in a sublime setting. Matthias Goerne is a high-class recitalist like Sophie Koch, Simon Keenlyside or Piotr Beczala. Here the diva Angela Gheorghiu can contemplate her international popularity.
As for production, we are pleased to see Così fan tutte by Mozart which has seduced both the dance and opera audiences thanks to the work of Anne Teresa De Keersmaeker, choreographer and director here. Beloved conductor Philippe Jordan, current music director of the Paris Opera, is in the orchestra pit. Mozart again with La Clemenza di Tito presenting a very high-end double distribution (Ramón Vargas / Michael Spyres, Stéphanie d’Oustrac / Marianne Crebassa, Amanda Majeski / Aleksandra Kurzak, etc.).
The contemporary creation is not forgotten with a great moment at the Opera. ´Only the sound remains´ by the great composer Kaija Saariaho offers Philippe Jaroussky the opportunity to express a new facet of his great talent. The immense artist Barbara Hannigan returns in the twofold Bluebeard’s Castle by Bartók / Voix Humaine by Poulenc in a perfect staging of Krzysztof Warlikowski.
Finally, two new productions attract attention because the beautiful oratorio Jephtha by Handel is directed by William Christie and brings together on stage Ian Bostridge, Marie-Nicole Lemieux and Valer Sabadus, among others. And the rebelious Don Pasquale has an almost ideal distribution (Michele Pertusi, Nadine Sierra, Lawrence Brownlee and Florian Sempey). Unforgettable moments!
The season of the Opéra National de Paris is divided between its two main halls. You will find the overview of the 2017-2018 season of the Palais Garnier by following this link.