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Archives — Lyrical



28 Jan – 03 Feb 2022

– Oh! I see water trembling over our heads!... – No, no, it is the light searching for you!...ARIANE ET BARBE-BLEUE

It is a myth which has haunted the collective subconsciousness for centuries: the man who keeps women imprisoned in the depths of his castle. The man with the beard tinged with the blood of his victims. That man’s name has since become synonymous with one of Perrault’s tales: Bluebeard.

At the dawn of the 20th century, Dukas based his one and only opera around him. Set to Maeterlinck’s impassioned poetry, this musical tale includes an additional character: Ariadne, the heroine from the legend of Theseus, who helped lead the latter out of the labyrinth and vanquish the Minotaur. For Dukas, Ariadne becomes the luminous thread in Bluebeard’s Castle.

On entering into this maze of passageways, doors, cellars, and vaults, Ariadne has but one goal in mind: to open the last door to free the prisoners. But the light collides with the contradictions of the human soul. And in this subterranean world, where Bluebeard is conspicuous by his absence, the heroine will discover that freedom can be frightening.

The unprecedented musical substance and depth of Dukas’ score bears the mark of Wagner and Debussy. The song is constantly overwhelmed by the orchestra, just like that sombre castle, where the water trembles over our heads and threatens to engulf us.

After his iconoclastic Offenbach Report, Mikaël Serre returns to the Lorraine National Opera. The Franco-German director does nothing to conceal the tenebrous zones, mental labyrinths and other monsters that lie dormant inside us. Intent on storming Bluebeard’s Castle, he questions our need to be saved and the price at which we are ready to sacrifice our freedom.


Ariane et Barbe-Bleue, opera in three acts
First performed at the Opéra-Comique in Paris on May 10, 1907

New production Opéra national de Lorraine

Maurice Maeterlinck

Paul Dukas



Jean-Marie Zeitouni

Orchestra and Chorus of the Opéra national de Lorraine


Mikaël Serre

Sets and costumes

Nina Wetzel


Sébastien Dupouey

Lighting design

Franck Evin


Jens Hillje

Director assistant

Elizabeth Calleo, Diane Clément

Costumes assistant

Marie Brandt


Catherine Hunold


Vincent Le Texier

The Nurse

Anaïk Morel


Héloïse Mas


Clara Guillon


Samantha Louis-Jean


Tamara Bounazou


Nine d'Urso

Isolated voices

Benjamin Colin, Ill Ju Lee, Christophe Sagnier, Ju In Yoon


Benjamin Colin, Wook Kang, Christophe Sagnier

Video concept and directing

Sébastien Dupouey


Giuseppe Greco, Sébastien Dupouey

Shooting lighting design

Michael Wetzel

Shooting extras

Otilly Belcour, Antonin Cloteau, Charlène Cudrat, Mélina Dumay, Marc Latapie Sere,

Anna Moriot, Margot Pillant, Pauline Zaia

See also

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