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Les Huguenots tickets

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Les Huguenots

Venue: Erkel Theatre

 
1087 Budapest
II. János Pál pápa tér 30
Hungary
 
 
All dates
Season 2019
 

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Next performance (see season calendar above for other dates)
Les Huguenots
Wed 23 January 2019
Category 1
Hour Hall Price Tickets Buy
18:00 Erkel Theatre 23 € Add to cart
 
 
Les Huguenots
Fri 25 January 2019
Category 1
Hour Hall Price Tickets Buy
18:00 Erkel Theatre 23 € Add to cart
 
 
Les Huguenots
Sun 27 January 2019
Category 1
Hour Hall Price Tickets Buy
11:00 Erkel Theatre
ON REQUEST
 
 
 
Event details
 
Composer: Giacomo Meyerbeer

Synopsis

 

Act 1

The chateau of the Count

A short orchestral prelude, featuring the Lutheran chorale Ein feste Burg, replaces the extended overture Meyerbeer originally intended for the opera. The Catholic Count of Nevers is entertaining his fellow noblemen. They await the arrival of Raoul, and are surprised to hear that this emissary of the Court is a Huguenot. After a drinking song at Raoul's entry, the newcomer is prevailed upon to give a tale of love. Raoul tells of an unknown beauty he has rescued and fallen in love with. (With a daring and unusual stroke of orchestration, Meyerbeer accompanies this aria with a solo viola d'amore). Raoul's Protestant servant Marcel is shocked to see his master in such wicked company and sings a hearty Protestant prayer (to the tune of 'Ein feste Burg'). He then sings a Huguenot battle song from the siege of La Rochelle, Pif, paf.

The arrival of a mysterious lady stranger to speak to Nevers (off stage) interrupts the proceedings. Raoul recognises her as his mysterious beauty. In fact she is Nevers' intended bride, Valentine (daughter of St. Bris), instructed by the Queen to break off her engagement. The page Urbain enters with a secret message for Raoul, daring him to come blindfolded to a secret rendezvous.

 

Act 2

The gardens at the Château de Chenonceaux

Queen Marguerite looks into a mirror held by her enamoured page Urbain, and sings the virtuoso pastorale, O beau pays de la Touraine. Valentine enters and reports that Nevers has agreed to break the engagement. Marguerite's entourage of ladies enter dressed for bathing. This leads to a ballet. Raoul enters blindfolded and the ladies tease him. With his sight restored, the Queen orders Raoul to marry Valentine to cement relations between the Protestant and Catholic factions. In a complex final ensemble, while a chorus of nobles swears friendship, Raoul, who believes Valentine is the mistress of Nevers, refuses to comply with the Queen's command. The nobles then swear revenge, and Marcel reproaches Raoul for mixing with Catholics.

 

Act 3

Paris, the 'Pré aux clercs' on the left bank of the Seine, at sunset

The act opens with extensive scene setting of citizens, soldiers, church-goers and gypsies. Valentine has just married Nevers, but remains in the chapel to pray. Marcel delivers a challenge from Raoul. Saint-Bris decides to attack Raoul, but is overheard by Valentine. The town crier declares curfew (the scene anticipating a similar one in Wagner's Die Meistersinger). Valentine, in disguise, tells Marcel of the plot against Raoul. The duel is interrupted by rival factions of Protestant and Catholic students, and only the arrival of the Queen stems the chaos. Raoul realises that Valentine has saved him and that his suspicions of her were unfounded. However, now she is wedded to his enemy. Nevers leads her away in a splendid procession.

 

Act 4

A room in Nevers' Parisian town-house

Valentine, alone, is surprised by Raoul who wishes to have one last meeting with her. The sound of approaching people leads Raoul to hide behind a curtain, where he hears the Catholic nobles, accompanied by three monks, who bless their swords, pledge to murder the Huguenots. Only Nevers does not join in the oath. This scene is generally judged the most gripping in the opera, and is accompanied by some of its most dramatic music. When the nobles have departed, Raoul is torn between warning his fellows and staying with Valentine, but finally duty triumphs over love. Valentine faints as Raoul makes his escape.

 

Act 5

Scene 1: A ballroom

The Protestants are celebrating the marriage of the Queen to Henry of Navarre. The tolling of a bell interrupts the proceeding, as does the entrance of Raoul, who informs the assembly that the second stroke was the signal for the Catholic massacre of the Huguenots.

[A performance tradition existed in some centres of ending the opera with Scene 1 and its suggestion of the massacre])

Scene 2: A cemetery: in the background, a ruined Protestant church

Nevers dies protecting Marcel, who is wounded; Valentine agrees to become a Protestant to marry Raoul and Marcel carries out the nuptials. A 'chorus of murderers' shoots all three, after they express their vision of heaven, 'with six harps'. Wounded, they are finally murdered by St. Bris and his men, he realising only too late that he has killed his own daughter. (Cf. the closing scene of Fromental Halévy's opera, La Juive, libretto also by Scribe, produced a year earlier than Les Huguenots). The entrance of the Queen, and the chorus of soldiers singing 'God wants blood!', brings the opera to a close.

 
Program details
 

Conductor: Oliver von Dohnányi 
Marguerite de Valois, Queen of Navarre: Klára Kolonits / Orsolya Hajnalka Rőser Urbain, the Queen's page: Melinda Heiter / Gabriella Balga 
Count Saint-Bris: Antal Cseh / Tamás Busa 
Valentine, daughter of Count Saint-Bris: Gabriella Létay Kiss / Polina Pasztircsák Raoul de Nangis, a Protestant gentleman: Attila Fekete / Boldizsár László 
Marcel, Raoul's servant: Gábor Bretz / Géza Gábor 
Count of Nevers: Zsolt Haja / Károly Szemerédy 
Cossé, a Catholic gentleman: Tivadar Kiss / József Mukk 
Tavannes, a Catholic gentleman: Jenő Dékán / Béla Turpinszky Gippert 
Thoré, a Catholic gentleman: Ferenc Cserhalmi / András Kőrösi 
De Retz, a Catholic gentleman: Máté Fülep / Róbert Rezsnyák 
Méru, a Catholic gentleman: János Szerekován / Péter Kiss 
Maurevert, a Catholic gentleman: András Kiss / Zsolt Molnár 
Bois-Rosé, a Huguenot soldier: Ferenc Kristofori / László Beöthy-Kiss
Credits


Librettist: Eugène Scribe / Émile Deschamps 
Director: János Szikora 
Set designer: Balázs Horesnyi 
Costume designer: Yvette Alida Kovács 
Dramaturg: Judit Kenesey

 
Venue
 
Erkel Theatre
 

Opened in 1911 originally, the Erkel Theatre is Hungary’s largest theatre building. Its history is intertwined with the golden age of Hungarian opera performance, with such luminaries as Luciano Pavarotti, Placido Domingo, Éva Marton and Grace Bumbry all having graced the stage of a building whose acoustics are considered the stuff of opera legend.

After being shuttered up for more than five years with its fate in doubt following closure in 2007, the Hungarian government last year provided 1.7 billion forints in grants for the theatre’s renewal, allowing the Hungarian State Opera to renovate the Erkel Theatre to a standard suitable for holding performances.

Much of the refurbishments took place behind the scenes, with soloist and shared dressing rooms and common areas refitted and expanded. In addition, the stage’s technical equipment has undergone significant modernisation, while the building’s service systems (water, plumbing, heating and ventilation) have also been brought up to date.

Audiences will now step into an auditorium with a completely new look, while every effort was made to ensure that the building's fantastic acoustic properties remained unchanged. A factor that will greatly increase comfort is the modern ventilation system installed in the seating area. Although the number of seats has been reduced from 1,935 to 1,819 by refitting the rows of seats for more comfort, the theatre nevertheless retains its rank as the highest capacity theatre in Hungary – and in Eastern Central Europe.

 
 
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