Press Kit

La Damnation de Faust

Opéra Bastille
December 8th, 2015 - #galaladamnationdefaust
  • The Opera

  • The Gala

  • Le Cercle Berlioz

  • The Cercle Berlioz and The Honorary Committee

  • The Gallery

  • The Opera



    New production

    Opera in four parties (1846)
    Music by Hector Berlioz (1803-1869)
    Poem by Hector Berlioz, Almire Gandonnière from Johann Wolfgang Von Goethe Faust
    Translated by Gérard de Nerval
    In French

    "This marvellous book fascinated me from the very beginning. I could not put it down. I read it incessantly, during meals, in the theatre, in the street, everywhere."
    And so it was, following the composer’s discovery of Faust part one in 1828 that Goethe joined Virgil and Shakespeare to form Berlioz's trinity. Without taking the time to catch his breath, he set the verse passages of Gérard de Nerval’s prose translation to music and published them under the title huit scenes de Faust. Eighteen years later, during his travels "in Austria, Hungary, Bohemia and Silesia" he decided to revise and develop the material into La Damnation de Faust and the same feverish urge took hold of him. "Once underway, I wrote the missing verses as the musical ideas came to me. I composed the score when and where I could: in the carriage, on the train, on steam boats”.

    As if swept away by "the longing of too vast a heart and a soul thirsting for elusive happiness", Berlioz became one with his creation. The voice that invokes "immense, impenetrable and proud nature" is entirely his own and its extraordinary breadth transcends traditional forms to become a symphonic and operatic dream.

    Bringing out the dramatic force of this légende dramatique is a constant challenge that stage director Alvis Hermanis has willingly accepted. Philippe Jordan conducts the first installment of a Berlioz cycle which is continue over several seasons. It also marks the return of Jonas Kaufmann and Bryn Terfel to the Paris Opera.

    Rolex, Partner of La Damnation de Faust
    Groupe Groupama "Mécène" of La Damnation de Faust
    With the support of Cercle Berlioz


    • Philippe Jordan Conductor
    • Alvis Hermanis Stage director and sets
    • Christine Neumeister Costumes
    • Gleb Filshtinsky Lighting design
    • Katrina Neiburga Video
    • Alla Sigalova Choreography
    • Christian Longchamp, Simon Hatab Dramaturgy
    • José Luis Basso Chorus Director
    • Sophie Koch Marguerite
    • Jonas Kaufmann Faust
    • Bryn Terfel Méphistophélès
    • Edwin Crossley-Mercer Brander
    • Sophie Claisse Voix Céleste

    Paris Orchestra and Chorus
    Maîtrise des Hauts-de-Seine / Paris Children’s Choir

  • The Gala

    The Schedule

    • 19:30

      First part of the performance

    • 20:40

      Intermission cocktail

    • 21:10

      Second part of the performance

    • 22:30

      Gala supper on the stage of the Opera Bastille with the artists (to be reserved)

    Cocktail during the intermission


    Schedules subject to change

    The Gala evening is a fundraising event organized to support the lyrics productions of the Paris national Opera.

    A small-scale chamber music concert-Concertino- will be performed by members of the Orchestra a few minutes before the performance in the public areas in order to enable you to appreciate some often-unexpected facets of the composer of the opera you are about to see.

  • Le Cercle Berlioz

    For the first time, the Paris Opera takes you into the world of its creations. The Cercle Berlioz invites you behind the scenes of the much awaited production of Hector Berlioz’s Damnation of Faust programmed for December 2015.You will discover a mock-up of the planned staging, workshops where costumes and scenery are crafted, rehearsals, a private recital, and conferences by the artists. A truly exceptional program to be revealed to the members of the Cercle Berlioz.

    For the first time, the Paris National Opera offers its patrons the opportunity to dive into the heart of the creation of a new production.
    The chosen work, Hector Berlioz’s Damnation of Faust marks the comeback of great voices on the stage of the Opéra Bastille, with Jonas Kaufmann playing the part of Faust, Sophie Koch playing that of Marguerite and Bryn Terfel that of Mephistopheles. Philippe Jordan will conduct this production which is endowed with an exceptional cast.

    The stage director Alvis Hermanis and his team will let the circle’s members exclusively take a sneak peek at the artistic path and the creation process throughout the months of teamwork. The circle’s members will be invited to special events with the artists to learn about the composer’s dramaturgical approach, the evolution of the staging director’s inspiration, the outlook of the invited interprets and of the opera’s specific professions involved.

    This discovery journey will undoubtedly arouse astonishment and wonder, and allow to go about the opera with a knowledgeable eye on the opening night.
    No production can see the light of day without the support of generous patrons. We would like to express our sincere gratitude for the crucial role you will take on in this production.

    Become a patron of The Damnation of Faust by joining the Cercle Berlioz!

  • The Cercle Berlioz and The Honorary Committee

    The Cercle Berlioz members and The Honorary Committee

    Etienne Binant
    Bertrand et Elisabeth Meunier
    Jean-François Roverato
    William et Françoise Torchiana
    Jean-Louis Beffa
    Robert et Elizabeth Carroll
    Anne et Laurent Diot
    Romain et Catherine Durand-Milanolo
    Frédéric Fontan de Gouvion St Cyr
    Xavier Hufkens
    Claude et Tuulikki Janssen
    Christian et Béatrice Schlumberger
    Jean et Sophie Solanet
    Claudine Théodore
    Antoine et Sylvie Winckler

    Jean-Marie Baillot-d’Estivaux
    Gilbert Bléas
    Jacques et Katharina Bouhet
    Norbert Brenes
    Elisabeth A.R. Brown
    Jean-Baptiste Coulomb
    Jean-Marc Daillance
    Camille de Dampierre
    Charles Foussard
    Annick Frotiée
    Olivier et Maryse Gayno
    Michel Germain
    Mehdi Houkari
    Ioana Labau
    Caroline et Fady Lahame
    Yvette Le Coze
    Clive et Danielle Llewellyn
    Chantal Marchal
    Benjamin Mourrat
    Helman et Anne le Pas de Sécheval
    Chantal Peraudeau
    Jean et Hélène Peters
    Olivier Purcell
    Jean-Pierre et Gabrielle Raynal
    Marie-Claire Ricard
    Thaddaeus Ropac
    Lydie Roudil
    Noëlie Schoenlaub
    Sophie et Daniel Thierry
    Claudie Thuillier-Couteaux
    Jean-Louis Valérien-Perrin
    Philippe Villin