115, 95, 70, 40, 15, 6 €

Les Pêcheurs de Perles

Georges Bizet

June 18 to 28, 2012

115, 95, 70, 40, 15, 6 €

Opera in 3 acts, 1863. Libretto by Eugène Cormon and Michel Carré

Presentation of the work by Agnès Terrier 40 minutes prior to each performance.

Bizet was not yet 25 when he premiered Les Pêcheurs de perles in the most dynamic institution of the capital.
Open to beginners, the Théâtre-Lyrique had come to the fore with Gounod's Faust and Berlioz prepared his Troyens à Carthage. there.
Inspired byLa Vestale and Norma, this ambitious love drama gave Bizet an oriental subject that fit his inspiration.
On the island of Ceylon, between sky and sea, Leïla and Nadir seek to impose the law of love on a people driven by primitive passions. As later in Carmen, Bizet employs his perfect mastery of means to establish the supreme value of the emotions. Encouraged by Gounod, Bizet was congratulated by Berlioz for his precocious originality.

Never revived during his lifetime, the work met with success as soon as it entered the Opéra Comique repertoire.

This new production will be staged by Yoshi Oida and conducted by Leo Hussain with the Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France.


Act I
Ceylon prior to the British occupation. Each year a community of fishermen settles on the same beach for ritual fishing. Stern Zurga is picked out as leader. He welcomes Nadir, a young and brave hunter who is back home after a long journey. The two men are bound by an old friendship and an oath: both in love with a priestess while on a trip to Kandy, they swore to renounce a forbidden love and save their friendship. There appears the new priestess who comes to protect the fishermen. She is greeted by the people and Zurga has her promise to remain veiled and chaste with the finest pearl or death as a reward. Mysterious Leila swears yet trembles upon recognizing Nadir. He too heard her and blames himself for having followed the young woman since they met in Kandy. Leila is led to the holy rock by the priest Nourabad. In the evening the people’s invocations and Leila’s prayer can be heard. She listens to Nadir’s voice join hers with delight.

Act II
As Nourabad is about to leave Leila for her first night on the rock, she tells him of her first act of valor when as a child she sheltered a fugitive from his assailants and was given a necklace by him. Nadir appears as soon as she is left alone. They spend some time together despite the interdict. A storm arises as if the heavens reprobated them. Nourabad surprises Nadir. The alarmed populace sets upon Nadir and Leila denounced by Nourabad. Zurga intervenes and wants to favor their escape but on recognizing Leila unveiled by Nourabad, he condemns them to death.

As the storm wanes, Zurga meditates, repents and decides to spare the woman he loved and his friend. Leila is granted a last meeting with her judge. She begs for Nadir’s life but when she reveals her love for the hunter, Zurga becomes furious with jealousy. When Nourabad comes to take Leila to her death, she gives her necklace to a fisherman. Zurga grabs it and follows her hurriedly. Meanwhile, Nadir is expecting his execution surrounded by fishermen drunk with sacred libations. Leila and Nadir are to be slain at dawn. Together at last, they await death in ecstasy. There is a glow that is not dawn but a fire devastating the camp lit by Zurga, whose life was saved by Leila. The fire enables the lovers to flee amid the confusion.

Music direction, Leo Hussain • Staging, Yoshi Oida • With Sonya Yoncheva, Dmitry Korchak, André Heyboer, Nicolas Testé • Choir, accentus • Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France

See all the cast

Monday, June 18, 2012 - 8:00pm

Wednesday, June 20, 2012 - 8:00pm

Friday, June 22, 2012 - 8:00pm

Sunday, June 24, 2012 - 3:00pm

Tuesday, June 26, 2012 - 8:00pm

Thursday, June 28, 2012 - 8:00pm

Salle Favart

115, 95, 70, 40, 15, 6 €

Présentation des Pêcheurs de perles par Agnès Terrier


Musical direction
Leo Hussain
Yoshi Oida
Choregraphy et staging
Daniela Kurz
Tom Schenk
Richard Hudson
Fabrice Kebour
Musical assistant
Robert Houssart
Staging assistant
Rob Kearley
Choregraphy assistant
Katharina Bader
Costumes assistant
Kumi Sakurai
Biographie Christophe Grapperon © Mario Le Sergent
Christophe Grapperon
Vocal coach
Marine Thoreau La Salle
Sonya Yoncheva
Dmitry Korchak
André Heyboer
André Heyboer
Nicolas Testé

Dancers, Yoomi Ahn, Martin Blazek, Samuel Delvaux, Benjamin Duluc, Lola Kervroedan, Véronique Laugier, Ludovic Lezin, Emily Mezières, Leonardo Rodrigues, Fabienne Veg


Choir, accentus
Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France

Production, Opéra Comique

Co-production, Opéra Royal de Wallonie, Liège
Coproduction associé, Palazzetto Bru Zane – Centre de musique romantique française


With the support of:
Palazzetto Bruzane
Logo de France Musique
France inter

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