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© Guergana Damianova / onp

Donizetti L’Elisir d’Amore

The 21 October 2021
Opéra Bastille - Paris
Program

Donizetti : L’Elisir d’Amore 130 mn

Cast
  • Conductor
    Giampaolo Bisanti
  • Director
    Laurent Pelly
  • Performers
    Nemorino: Matthew Polenzani
    Adina: Sydney Mancasola
    Belcore: Simone Del Savio
    Dulcamara: Ambrogio Maestri
Premium Category

Category Premium (valid on some dates): This category includes seats in Category + (Optima), a glass of champagne per person in private rooms and one programme per booking.

The Premium price includes a contribution (€150 per ticket) to support the friends of the Opera (AROP).

  • Venue Info
  • Seating Plan
  • Synopsis

Opéra Bastille - Paris Location Place de la Bastille - 75012 Paris France

  • Venue's Capacity: 2745

From its beginnings under Louis XIV to the present day, including the construction of the Palais Gamier under Napoleon III, the history of the Paris Opera has been marked by the wishes and whims of the French government. The decision to build a new opera on the Place de la Bastille is no exception, made by Frangois Mitterrand less than a year after being elected President. A competition was organized, and of the 750 projects presented, the one designed by the Uruguayan-Canadian architect Carl Ott won. The new building, whose large ground surface ostentatiously marks the site where the French Revolution broke out, was inaugurated during the bicentennial celebrations of that same Revolution in 1989.

 

From the Place de la Bastille, the building's glass facade, with its "aleatory" lighting designed by Yann Kersale, suggests the sober modernism of its interior, even more so because the interior uses the same construction materials as the exterior, symbolizing a desire to open out to the public. Once inside, one can discover the warmth of the light wood that adorns the large 2703-seat hall with its proscenium stage. But the building barely stops here, for one must imagine the enormous backstage that takes up 55 per cent of the edifice's total volume, the six underground stories of technical premises, the workshops that make and stock the mobile sets as well as the costumes, not to mention the Gounod Hall, that has a stage identical to the main one, used for rehearsals. Designed around a symmetrical axis that is symbolized by the sculpted tuning forks that decorate the public premises, the Bastille Opera is a formidable computerized machine for staging opera productions, employing the population of a veritable city-within-a-city.

 

The conductor Myung-Whun Chung faced the difficult task of starting up this machine. The audience discovered productions staged by Bob Wilson or Peter Sellars, which it did not always unanimously applaud. But today, in full possession of its impressive technical means, permitting the rotation of different productions, the Bastille Opera proposes the most diverse performances. Currently managed by Hugues Gall and his music director James Conlon, revivals, premieres and major productions now share the season's billing, at a pace that leaves the audience little respite.

Since 2014, Stépahne Lissner is the Director of the Paris Opera.

Opéra Bastille

The seating plan is given as an indication and has no contractual value.
The division of categories may differ depending on shows and dates.

Synopsis

L’Elisir d’Amore

This is a comic opera in two acts, written by the Italian composer Gaetano Donizetti. It was written in only six weeks and was instantly popular. Between 1838 and 1848 it was regularly the most performed opera in Italy. L'elixir d'amore premiered on 12th May 1832 in Milan at the Teatro della Canobbiana.

It is still the most performed of Donizetti's operas and it comes 13th on the list of most performed operas worldwide. It has been recorded numerous times.
The opera contains 'Una furtiva lagrima'; a popular tenor aria sung by the main two characters Adina and Nemorino.

HISTORY
The story of L'elixir d'amore takes place in a small village in the Basque Country, Spain, towards the end of the eighteenth century.

Act 1
Nemorino is a poor peasant who is in love with a beautiful landowner called Adina. He hopes that a magic potion will gain Adina's love. Belcore, a sergeant, arrives and tries to court Adina. This unsettles Nemorino who decides to declare his love for Adina, who rejects him. Dulcamara, a medicine man, arrives and Nemorino decides to buy a love potion from him. Dulcamara tells Nemorino that the potion wont work for twenty four hours, giving him enough time to escape before Nemorino discovers that it has not worked. After taking some of the potion, Nemorino meets Adina and acts indifferently, which annoys Adina. Belcore proposed to Adina, who agrees to marry him in six days time. However, the following day Belcore discovers that his regiment must leave the next day, and so Adina promises to marry him before he leaves and invites everyone to the upcoming wedding.

Act 2
Belcore and Adina are waiting to sign the official marriage contract but Adina is annoyed that Nemorino has not attended. Dulcamara is there and Nemorino finds him, begging for another potion that is stronger as he believes he has lost Adina. However, since Nemorino has no money to pay him, Dulcamara refuses to give him any potion and leaves. Adina has put off signing the marriage contract and Belcore emerges wondering why she has postponed it. He discoverd Nemorino and asks why he looks miserable. Nemorino replies that he needs money, and Belcore persuades him to sign a contract and join the military, for which Nemorino receives some money. Rumours spread that Nemorino's uncle has just died leaving him a fortune. Nemorino returns to the village after purchasing another love potion, and is greeted by friendly women. This convinces him that the potion has worked. Adina sees Nemorino and asks Dulcamara why he is so popular. On explaining Nemorino's desperation to win over the attention of a women, Adina realises his sincerity and that she loves him.

MAIN ROLES
Nemorino, a peasant in love with Adina, tenor
Adina, a wealthy landowner, soprano
Belcore, a sergeant, baritone
Dr Dulcamara, a medicine man, bass
Giannetta, Adina's friend, soprano

Opéra Bastille

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