L'Histoire de Manon
Place de l’Opéra 75009 Paris
Capacity 1900 seats
2 hours and 35 minutes
Recommended for all ages
In 1974 the British choreographer, Kenneth MacMillan, first choreographed The Story of Manon for the Royal Ballet in London. Drawing inspiration from the novel by Abbé Prévost, L’Histoire du chevalier des Grieux et de Manon Lescaut (The Story of the Chevalier Des Grieux and Manon Lescaut) creates one of the richest and most complex ballet characters in neoclassical ballet. Many ballerinas have become the famous character that is Manon, and brought their own artistic touch. Come and discover who will lead you through this story for an exceptional evening at Palais Garnier.
To make your experience an unforgettable one, you will be able to choose a unique offer which includes a glass of champagne, a programme and exclusive access to the Salon Liebermann. See below for more details.
It is through the pas de deux that the choreographer, Kenneth MacMillan, begins creating his ballets and it has therefore become a striking characteristic of his style. Through recurring movements, notable lifts, and the transporting compositions of Massenet, Macmillan creates a choreographic masterpiece of a ballet with intertwined themes. In The Story of Manon, the lift is ecstatic, original (Act 1, second scene), parodic (Act 2, first scene), tragic (Act 3, last scene). Being truly innovative, MacMillan never loses sight of expressiveness and storytelling. From pas de deux to original lifts, let yourself be won over by this tragic love story on the glorious Palais Garnier stage.
Add-On & Special Experience
Looking for more than a standard ticket to the show? To make your experience an unforgettable one, you will be able to choose this following upgrated offer at the time of booking:
Champagne + Programme + Exclusive Access to Salon Liebermann + Show
This package is available even after standard sales for the opera are closed. It includes a glass of champagne, a show programme, and exclusive access to the Palais Garnier's beautiful Salon Liebermann, reserved for primary ticket holders. A result of our official partnership with the Friends of Paris Opera Association, the package can only be purchased via the Theatre in Paris box office.
Opéra Palais Garnier
One of the most prestigious stages in all of France, the Palais Garnier was constructed from 1860 to 1875, designed by legendary architect Charles Garnier, who was selected among a handful of talented architects in a fierce design competition. The building itself is considered a artful masterpiece, and was one of the most expensive construction projects to come from the Second French Empire under the reign of Napoléon III. The elaborate use of different materials to lend a lavish multicolored facade was typical of many of the works under the rule of Napoléon III, and features sculptures of various figures of Greek mythology. The official inauguration in 1875 was attended by the Mayor of London and Amsterdam, the King Alphonso XII of Spain, and hundreds of members from European high society.
The interior was meticulously designed with intertwining corridors, alcoves and landings to allow for easy movment of large numbers of people; complete with a grand marbled staircase and the grand foyer, acting as the drawing room for all of Paris high society and covered in gilded paintings. The auditorium itself is in a traditional Italian horseshoe shape, seating 1900. The stage is the largest in Europe and can accomodate 450 artists, revealed by the opening of the legendary painted curtain. Garnier himself designed the 7-tonne chandelier sparkling above the audience. In 1896, one of the many chandelier counterweights broke free and killed a concierge, the incident that inspired the scenes in the 1910 novel-turned-musical The Phantom of the Opera. The space above the audotorium in the copula dome was once used strictly for cleaning the chandelier, but has since been transformed into a space for opera and dance rehersals.
The legendary building was initially deemed the Academie Imperiale de Musique, yet with the fall of the Second Empire and the start of the Third Republic, this was aptly changed for the Academie Nationale de Musique, which we see written across the exterior facade to this day. Garnier envisioned his design and the transformation of the surrounding area, and to this day the opulence of the Second Empire lives on in this living monument. The avenue de l'Opéra remains the only large Parisian corridor without trees, as Garnier explicitly prevented Hausmann from adorning the street with trees, arguing that his Palais Garnier was to be the main focus. Palais Garnier became the official name in 1989 with the construction of the Opéra Bastille, and the venue now houses primarily ballets.
Where will I be seated?
There are a maximum of three categories available. The theatre, Palais Garnier, is an Italian-style auditorium, meaning the seats are in a horse-shoe shape. Theatre in Paris guests are centrally placed either in the orchestra, on the first level/mezzanine, or in the second, third, and fourth level lodge boxes to have an optimal view of the stage.
How do I get to the theatre?
The Palais Garnier is accessible by the metro station Opéra (Lines 3, 7, 8 and RER A). Our hotline can be reached in case of difficulty finding the theatre weekdays from 10 am to 7pm Paris time. For details, we invite you to consult the map above.
What do I do when I get to the theatre?
Theatre in Paris invites you to arrive 30 minutes before the beginning of The Story of Manon, and present your voucher to the front desk. The theatre's English-speaking staff members will guide you to your seats. Please note that the performances at the Palais Garnier begin precisely on time and all late arrivals will not be permitted to enter the auditorium until intermission.
How long does the show last?
The Story of Manon lasts two hours and 35 minutes.
Is it a show for travellers or French people?
Both! The Palais Garnier has been welcoming audiences from all over the world for close to 150 years. The ballet The story of Manon has no dialogue and is accessible to all ages and languages.
Does the venue have a specific dress code?
For Parisian operas and ballets, the dress tends to be a bit fancier than in other venues, so feel free to have a little fun and dress to impress. Many Parisians will arrive directly from work, dressed in casual chic attire. Generally, elegant casual wear is required, jackets are recommended for men. Shorts, Bermuda shorts, flip-flops, sportswear and trainers are discouraged.
Is there a coat check available?
Free cloakrooms are available on various floors of the Palais Garnier. Travel bags and suitcase are not allowed.
Specific measures and obligations may apply to this show. Before making your reservation, please check the updated information on our Covid-19 page: https://www.theatreinparis.com/en/page/covid-19