Madama Butterfly at the Festival d'Aix-en-Provence

festival Aix-en-provence madama butterfly tickets
Théâtre de l'Archévêché

Show ended

Other languages with surtitles


Théâtre de l'Archévêché
Palais de l'Ancien Archevêché - Place des Martyrs de la Résistance - 13100 Aix-en-Provence
Capacity 1250 seats


2 h 45 min

With intermission



For all audiences

In Italian surtitled in English and French

Highlights: Madama Butterfly at the Festival d'Aix-en-Provence

Picture the scene - it’s July, and summer in the south of France is in full swing. The flowers are blooming and fragrant, the sun is hot against your skin, and the meandering streets of Aix-en-Provence are a picturesque postcard of quaint French architecture. Your destination: the open-air Théâtre de l'Archevêché, where you are about to hear a magnificent Japanese operatic tragedy as performed in Italian, complete with English surtitles should you need them. The Festival d’Art Lyrique d’Aix-en-Provence has come around yet again, and it’s time to indulge in history’s most heart-rending tales!


In three acts, featuring a libretto by Luigi Illica and Giuseppe Giasoca, and completed with a stunning Italian score, bear witness to a tale that has stood the test of time, seated amidst the natural beauty of France’s idyllic south and caressed by a gentle summer breeze. The Festival d'Art Lyrique d'Aix-en-Provence has chosen to celebrate the centenary of Giacomo Puccini's death with an open-air performance of the beloved Madama Butterfly on the stage of the sumptuous Théâtre de l'Archevêché. The evening promises immense talent, sumptuous drama, and hair-raising musical feats, with the role of Cio-Cio-San assumed by the talented Albanian soprano Ermonela Jaho, and that of B.F. Pinkerton by the powerful tenor Adam Smith.
The two singers, accompanied by the chorus and orchestra of the Opéra de Lyon and under the careful conduction of Daniel Rustioni, promises to bring a tear to the eye of every spectator. A sublime opera in a picturesque venue that is certainly not to be missed in Aix-en-Provence this summer 2024!

Story: Madama Butterfly at the Festival d'Aix-en-Provence

Giacomo Puccini's opera Madama Butterfly has established itself as an iconic part of the 20th-century operatic repertoire, and remains a fan favourite amongst thespian aficionados and the uninitiated to this day. Madama Butterfly tells the heartbreaking story of Cio-Cio-San, a young Japanese geisha, and her tragic love affair with the American officer Pinkerton. Seduced by false promises, Cio-Cio-San marries Pinkerton, unaware of his duplicitous nature. When Pinkerton returns to America, leaving Cio-Cio-San pregnant and vulnerable, she remains hopeful of his return. After a long wait, Pinkerton returns — but he isn’t alone, and Cio-Cio-San finds him accompanied by his new wife. Devastated by his betrayal, Cio-Cio-San makes the ultimate sacrifice, taking her own life in an effort to preserve her son's honour.


For this depiction of Japanese traditionalism, Puccini wove a spellbinding score that incorporates elements of both Japanese and Western melodies as an ode to the ill-fated love between Cio-Cio-San and Pinkerton. Borne from the iconic score is a timeless work that has continued to captivate audiences since its premiere in 1904. Enjoy the gorgeous melodies of this gripping tale of love, deceit, and sacrifice in the open air upon the stage of the magnificent Théâtre de l'Archevêché this summer — a once-in-a-lifetime experience you won’t want to miss!


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Théâtre de l'Archévêché

Palais de l'Ancien Archevêché - Place des Martyrs de la Résistance - 13100 Aix-en-Provence

History and Fun Facts about the Théâtre de l’Archevêché

What do a host of internationally-acclaimed musicians, from the likes of soprano legends Teresa Stich-Randall, Teresa Berganza, Suzanne Danco, Mady Mesplé, Régine Crespin, Sylvia Sass, Graziella Sciutti, Rolando Panerai, Montserrat Caballé, and Marylin Horne, to the great conductors Carlo-Mario Giulini and Hans Rosbaud, composers Yan Maresz, Péter Ëotvös, and François Sarhan, and directors Joël Pommerat and Jorge Lavelli…allhave in common?

It’s the open-air stage in the courtyard of the Ancien Archevêché in Aix-en-Provence, which was transformed into a theatre in 1948 and has since become the emblematic venue of the Aix-en-Provence Opera Festival. Among others, each one of these talented and prolific artists has contributed to make this famous festival shine when summer arrives.

With its grand staircase, its medieval vaults, its 17th century wings, and its characteristically ocher Bibémus stone, the courtyard of the Old Archbishop's Palace is the charming venue where all opera lovers converge in July.
It is here that you will be able to savor the pleasure of the warm summer nights, the murmurs of the spectators, the joyful symphony of instruments, and of course the melodic lyricism of the performance.

An open-air stage where pleasures of the ears and of the eyes converge with hazy summer bliss!

Fast facts
Capacity: 1250
Handicap Accessible: Yes, please contact us at before booking so that we can notify the theatre.
Air conditioning: No
Heating: No
Coat Check: No


How do I get to the Théâtre de l'Archevêché to see Madama Butterfly?

The Théâtre de l'Archevêché is located in the courtyard of the Old Archbishop's Palace, Place des Martyrs de la Résistance in the charming city of Aix-en-Provence.
From the train station in the centre of Aix-en-Provence, it takes just a few minutes on foot to get to the Théâtre de l'Archevêché through the picturesque streets of Aix-en-Provence. Aix-en-Provence’s city centre is entirely pedestrianised.
From the TGV station, take the bus no. 40 which will lead you to the bus station located in the centre of the city.
If you come by car, the Pasteur and Bellegarde parking lots are located a 5 minutes' walk from the theatre.
In case of difficulty, our hotline can be reached during our business hours. Please see the footer of this page for our contact details.

Is there a dress code at the Théâtre de l'Archevêché?

There is no specific dress code at the Théâtre de l'Archevêché, but proper attire is appreciated.

Will I be able to see the surtitles without difficulty?

The Théâtre de l'Archevêché is a modern theatre that offers a good view of the stage and surtitles from all seats.

Should I tip the ushers at the Théâtre de l'Archevêché?

The ushers at the Théâtre de l'Archevêché do accept tips, but it's not common.

Is there a coat check available at the Théâtre de l’Archevêché?

Please note that at the Théâtre de l’Archevêché, you will NOT be able to leave your personal belongings in the cloakroom. In accordance with the Vigipirate plan, security measures at the Festival d'Aix-en-Provence performances have been reinforced. Bags will be searched and screened at the entrance to the performance venue to ensure the safety of all spectators. Suitcases, backpacks, and bulky luggage will be NOT be accepted inside the venue. All bottles such as sun cream, mosquito repellent, and deodorant will also be prohibited inside the venue.

The Théâtre de l'Archevêché is an open-air theatre. If it rains, will the performance of Madama Butterfly be cancelled?

Since 2008, the Théâtre de l’Archevêché has only cancelled one show and delayed another by a few minutes. Therefore, you can rest assured that cancellation only occurs in exceptionally rare circumstances. To ensure that the best viewing conditions are achieved, the Théâtre de l’Archevêché has a dedicated meteorological contact at Météo-France that helps with decision-making if ever there is a possibility of adverse weather. If the rain starts during the performance, Theatre in Paris will refund your tickets unless more than half of the performance has been played.

In the rare event that your performance is cancelled, reimbursement will be made only upon request with presentation of the ticket(s). All requests must be sent no later than 30 days after the end of the Festival. After this date, no refund will be made. No additional expenses (transportation, parking, hotels...) will be reimbursed or compensated.

I bought tickets for Madama Butterfly and I haven’t received them yet. Is this normal?

Yes, it’s completely normal! Your order will first be created as a pre-booking so that the Festival d'Aix-en-Provence can assign your seat. You may see a pre-payment on your card, but rest assured that we will not charge your card until your reservation has been validated by the theatre. Once the reservation is confirmed, you will receive your ticket by email.
Due to the large number of requests that the Festival d'Aix-en-Provence has to manage, this process usually takes two business days, but can take up to six days maximum. After six days if your order has not been validated, it will be cancelled, the pre-charge will disappear, and you will not be charged.

How do I know if my seats are next to each other?

Tickets of the same category that are booked during the same purchase session in the same booking order on our website are always assigned side by side. To be sure of this, make sure all of your tickets are in the same category and are included in your shopping cart at the time of purchase.