When Prince Golaud (Vincent le Texier), grandson of the aging King of Allemonde, meets the young and beautiful Mélisande (Elena Tsallagova) – a mysterious creature with long hair – he knows nothing about her. Though, he marries her. A few months later, Golaud announces his wedding to his dear brother Pelléas (Stéphane Degout), who seems to be falling in love with the young woman...
Before discovering Maeterlinck's play, Debussy said of the opera he dreamt of composing: "Music begins when words are powerless to express; music is perfect for the inexpressible; I would like it to seem to come out of the shadows and, at times, to go back, always discreet." Thanks to Maeterlinck's characters, to his highly precise and very vague language, so cruel and so apt, Debussy was able to realize the drama of his dreams. A fateful enchantment holds sway over the castle of Allemonde. No sooner does Golaud find Mélisande in the forest and bring her to the kingdom of his ancestors than they find themselves unable to leave, chained to a place that belongs, however, nowhere. The castle is racked by desolation and decay. The park seems to die under the weight of invisible darkness. The sun barely manages to break through and cast light on the miraculous yet abandoned fountain which used to heal the eyes of the blind and whose waters appear to be bottomless. From the walls one can see the sea, and, at last, the clear sky. But there are also underground tunnels leading to the center of the earth, suddenly reminding us that we are forever walking over chasms. Debussy's masterpiece is conducted for the first time by Philippe Jordan.
This opera was broadcast live on medici.tv.
Rudolf Nureyev – Agnès Letestu (Odette), José Martinez (Siegfried) – Corps de Ballet de l'Opéra national de Paris
Evelino Pidò, Marco Arturo Marelli – Natalie Dessay (Amina), Javier Camarena (Elvino) – Opéra Bastille