115, 95, 70, 40, 15, 6€


Jean-Baptiste Lully

May 12 to 21, 2011

115, 95, 70, 40, 15, 6€ Price
Atys Illustration

TRAGÉDIE EN MUSIQUE in one prologue and five acts by Jean Baptiste Lully. Poem by Philippe Quinault. Premiered in Saint-Germain-en-Laye on 10 January 1676

Atys © Pierre Grosbois

Atys © Pierre Grosbois

Atys © Pierre Grosbois

Atys © Pierre Grosbois

Atys © Pierre Grosbois

Atys © Pierre Grosbois

Atys © Pierre Grosbois

Atys © Pierre Grosbois

Atys © Pierre Grosbois

On its first performance at the court of Louis XIV, in conformity with custom, Atys was dubbed “l’opéra du Roy.” It was known that the king, who had actively partaken in its preparation, would often hum its arias. Its triumph was all the more dazzling at the Théâtre du Palais-Royal where the public rushed for the Parisian premiere in April, then acclaimed it at each revival while parodies increased. Wonderfully structured, served by a highly expressive music, with a constant choreographic variety and an unprecedented dramatic intensity, Atys is also the first opera to center its plot on love and the first French tragedy to have its hero die on stage. Introducing poetry of sentiment to conventional drama, the torments of the nymph Sangaride and the shepherd Atys, in the hands of jealous Cybele and her cult, touch us as the helplessness of youth facing a world of intransigence and sacrifice.


Time and the Hours are celebrating Louis XIV. Flore precedes spring so as to woo him before he goes to war. But Melpomene, the muse of tragedy pushes them aside: she wants to take advantage of winter and the assembled court to recall the love of Cybele and Atys. Then Iris reconciles them: may Nature and Art unite to celebrate Atys.

Act I
Atys gathers the Phrygians to celebrate the goddess Cybele. His friend Idas sets his religious zeal against his insensitivity. After having announced his resolution to never fall in love, Atys admits to have failed to his word. They are interrupted by Sangaride and Doris who are honoring Cybele. Sangaride is to wed King Celenus soon, but she confides to Doris that she loves Atys. However, Atys opens his heart to her: since he is to die after the nuptials, she should know that he loves her. The reciprocity of their feelings drives them to despair. But the ceremony to the goddess interrupts them and Cybele announces she will choose her sacrificer.

Act II
King Celenus confides to Atys his fear of not being loved by Sangaride. Atys must reassure his rival! Cybele wishes to honor Atys and choose him as her sacrificer. Celenus is delighted for his friend. Cybele tells her secret motives to her confidante Melisse: her love for mortal Atys is all too human. Then the Nations and Zephyrs gather to celebrate Cybele’s choice.

Doris and Idas come to tell Atys that Sangaride is intent on canceling the wedding and asking for Cybele’s protection. Overcome by sleep ordered by Cybele, Atys falls into slumber. The deities of sleep and the Dreams let Atys know that Cybele loves him and advise him to be faithful. Atys awakens with Cybele at his bedside. Sangaride comes to beseech the goddess. Atys prevents her from revealing their love but cannot silence Cybele. Sangaride leaves in grief. Cybele suffers from Atys’s indifference toward her.

Act IV
Convinced that Atys is in love with Cybele, Sangaride resigns herself to her marriage to Celenus, who tells Atys he is thrilled. After a moment of disappointment, the two lovers renew their vows and decide to employ Atys’s new power to their love’s advantage. The river Sangar invites his retinue to celebrate his son-in-law. Atys undertakes a daring enterprise: he announces that Cybele forbade the wedding so that Sangaride may become a priestess of her rite. He abducts Sangaride.

Act V
Cybele reveals everything to Celenus. and summons the young lovers. They appeal for clemency on each other’s behalf. But merciless Cybele invokes the hellish deity Alecton to bewitch Atys. The latter mistakes Sangaride for a monster and kills her. Recovering his senses, Atys appeals to rebellion against the heartless gods. While Cybele is smitten with remorse, dying Atys is brought back after he stabbed himself. Cybele turns him into a pine tree so that nature will remember this love.

William Christie & Jean-Marie Villégier • Bernard Richter, Stéphanie d’Oustrac, Emmanuelle de Negri, Nicolas Rivenq, Marc Mauillon, Sophie Daneman, Jaël Azzaretti, Paul Agnew, Cyril Auvity, Bernard Deletré, Jean Charles di Zazzo, Olivier Collin, Elodie Fonnard, Rachel Redmond, Anna Reinhold, Francisco Fernández, Reinoud Van Mechelen, Callum Thorpe, Benjamin Alunni, Arnaud Richard • Chœur et orchestre, Les Arts Florissants

See all the cast

Jeudi 12 Mai 2011 - 19:30

Vendredi 13 Mai 2011 - 19:30

Dimanche 15 Mai 2011 - 15:00

Lundi 16 Mai 2011 - 19:30

Mercredi 18 Mai 2011 - 19:30

Jeudi 19 Mai 2011 - 19:30

Samedi 21 Mai 2011 - 19:30

Salle Favart

115, 95, 70, 40, 15, 6€

Introduction à Atys par Agnès Terrier


William Christie
Musical direction
William Christie
Stage direction
Jean-Marie Villégier
Stage direction associate
Christophe Galland
Carlo Tommasi
Francine Lancelot
Béatrice Massin
Patrice Cauchetier
Patrick Méeüs
Daniel Blanc
Suzanne Pisteur
Conseiller musical
Paul Agnew
Choregraphy assistant
Béatrice Aubert
Costumes assistante
Anne Autran Dumour
Vocal coach
Benoît Hartoin
François Bazola
Linguistic advisor
Anne Pichard
Bernard Richter
DR Emmanuelle de Negri
Emmanuelle de Negri
Nicolas Rivenq
Marc Mauillon
Sophie Daneman
Jaël Azzaretti
Dieu du Sommeil
Paul Agnew
Cyril Auvity © Lina Khezzar
Cyril Auvity
Le Temps ; le fleuve Sangar
Bernard Deletré
Maître de cérémonie / Alecton
Jean Charles di Zazzo
Olivier Collin
Flore /Suite de Sangar
Élodie Fonnard
solist of the 2011 Jardin des Voix
Rachel Redmond
solist of the 2011 Jardin des Voix
Anna Reinhold
solist of the 2011 Jardin des Voix
Zéphir /Suite de Sangar
Francisco Fernández
solist of the 2011 Jardin des Voix
Reinoud Van Mechelen
Reinoud van Mechelen
solist of the 2011 Jardin des Voix
Callum Thorpe
solist of the 2011 Jardin des Voix
Benjamin Alunni
Choir member
Arnaud Richard
Songe Funeste
Arnaud Richard
Choir member

Dancers, Compagnie Fêtes galantes : Bruno Benne, Sarah Berreby, David Berring, Laura Brembilla, Olivier Collin, Estelle Corbière, Laurent Crespon, Claire Laureau, Adeline Lerme, Akiko Veaux.
Gil Isoart de l’Opéra National de Paris

Prêtresses, Céline Clergé, Shinta Delanoë, Vanessa Devraine, Cindy Doutres, Sophie Dumont, Adeline Godard, Scarlett Hohmann, Aude Roman

Choir et orchestra, Les Arts Florissants

Creation based on the 1987 production in the Salle Favart thanks to Ronald P. Stanton

Coproduction, Opéra Comique, Brooklyn Academy of Music,Théâtre de Caen, Opéra National de Bordeaux, Les Arts Florissants


With the support of:

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