Echo and Narcissus
4 avenue de Paris, 78000 Versailles
Capacity 750 seats
Concert version opera
For all audiences
In French surtitled in French
Highlights: Echo and Narcissus
Despite Echo and Narcissus not being among Christoph Willibald von Gluck's best-known operas, his final work, which up until now has largely been consigned to the dustheap of musical history, is to be given a grand restoration at The Royal Opera of Versailles. Don’t miss the opportunity to hear this work and to listen to it in a new light with Le Concert Spirituel, an orchestra that specializes in the resurrection of forgotten operas. While the piece may have disconcerted the composer's contemporaries, who were more used to Gluck’s innovation as an orchestrator of opera’s restoration, this work stands as a tribute to the splendor of the French operatic tradition. Let us rejoice at this rediscovery on such a prestigious stage!
Story: Echo and Narcissus
The wheel turns, and continued success is not guaranteed for any composer. Such was the case with Christoph Willibald von Gluck, the great reformer of opera, whose premiere of Echo and Narcissus failed to find acclaim. This lyrical drama in three acts is taken from Ovid's Metamorphoses, and tells us the tragic fate of the nymph, Echo, who repeats the last word she hears over and over again, and of Narcissus, so proud that he is condemned to love only his own reflection. How will the dialogue between them come to pass? Come find out for yourself from your perch on the comfortable purple seats of the Royal Opera House in Versailles!
Royal Opera of Versailles
The Royal Opera of Versailles
Categorized as one of the largest performance halls in Europe during its inauguration in 1770 requested by Louis XV, it is presently still admired as one of the grand luxurious stages in Paris due to its lavishing décor composed of early-century design. The ceiling above the room comprises an exquisite form of art, something similar to what you would see in the Sistine Chapel in Rome.
Opéra Royal was no ordinary room, it was prestigious among wealthy individuals who fancied theater. Hosting 1,500 people, only a specific number of guests were invited to view the best shows in Paris at the esteemed Versailles palace. Later the room was also used as a ballroom and a banquet hall.
After the revolution the Opéra Royal room was left whole but stripped of its 18th-century embellishment. Altering its original appearance, the room is renovated for official shows such as the opening of the Versailles museum in 1837. Renovated and inaugurated once again in 1957 after the Second World War by orders of architect André Japy, the room undertook a whole new look. In 2009 Opéra Royal opened its doors to spectators from all over the world and began to display an array of enlightened shows such as contemporary dance, ballet recitals, opera, and classical music concerts. Presently it offers more than 100 performances per season in its golden room occupied with ostentatious chandeliers, surrounded by red velvet seating.
Handicap Accessible: Yes
Air conditioning: No