Opera

Berlioz's La Damnation de Faust

Jean-Louis Grinda (stage director), Kazuki Yamada (conductor) — With Aude Extrémo (Marguerite), Pene Pati (Faust), Nicolas Courjal (Méphistophélès)...

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Cast

Jean-Louis Grinda — Stage director

Eugénie Andrin — Choreographer

Rudy Sabounghi — Stage design

Jorge Jara — Costume designer

Laurent Castaingt — Lighting designer

Julien Soulier — Video designer

Gabriel Grinda — Video

Vanessa D'Ayral de Sérignac — Assistant stage director

Uta Baatz — Assistant costume designer

David Zobel — Music consultant

Aude Extrémo — Marguerite

Pene Pati — Faust

Nicolas Courjal — Méphistophélès

Frédéric Caton — Brander

Galia Bakalov — Voix céleste

Choir of the Monte Carlo Opera — Choir

Stefano Visconti — Chorus Master

Program notes

Hector Berlioz was so taken with Goethe's Faust that it became the subject of his Op. 1, Huit scènes de Faust, in 1829 when he was still in his mid-twenties. Sixteen years later, he transformed this early work into a légende dramatique containing elements of both opera and cantata—a categorical ambiguity that may have contributed to the work's initial failure at the box office. Expansive in its scope and perspective, it was considered almost impossible to stage fully, even by the composer himself—until 1893, when Raoul Gunsbourg realized the first of many successful stagings to come at the very venue to which it returns for a 2022 blockbuster: the Monte Carlo Opera!

Berlioz's captivating retelling of the Faustian legend has never looked or sounded better than in this new production by Jean-Louis Grinda. A fitting grand finale for Grinda, who will pass the reins to Cecilia Bartoli as the next Monte Carlo Opera Director, La Damnation de Faust is a magnificent spectacle with 300 costumes and 80 singers, including one of the biggest new stars of the lyric stage, Samoan tenor Pene Pati, in the title role; mezzo Aude Extrémo as Marguerite; and acclaimed bass Nicolas Courjal as the devil in the flesh, Mephistopheles himself.

Photo: Pene Pati © Simon Fowler

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Available until

Sunday, November 19, 2023