Songs and Fragments at the Festival d'Aix-en-Provence

Songs and Fragments at the Festival d'Aix-en-Provence tickets
Théâtre du Jeu de Paume

Show ended

Other languages with surtitles


Théâtre du Jeu de Paume
17 - 21 rue de l'Opéra - 13100 Aix-en-Provence
Capacity 493 seats


1 h 30 min

No intermission



For all audiences

In English and German with English and French surtitles

Highlights: Songs and Fragments at the Festival d'Aix-en-Provence

Southern France’s beloved Festival d’Art Lyrique in Aix-en-Provence returns this year with a collection of great performances, including two extraordinary contemporary pieces showcased in a single evening with the presentation of Songs and Fragments!


Peter Maxwell Davies introduces his creation, Eight Songs for a Mad King, alongside an equally incredible work by György Kurtág, Kafka-Fragmente. The gripping lunacy of King George III precedes Kafka’s exquisite ruminations on anxiety, making for a thought-provoking evening equally rich in history and intellectual insight. Unexpected territories of music and harmony are explored within these two pieces; their unorthodox subject matters align beautifully with their striking defiance of traditional musical conventions.


Baritone Johannes Martin Kränzle and soprano Anna Prohaska are by far the most qualified to take us on a journey across surprising musical landscapes. Coupled with Barrie Kosky’s immaculate staging, the scores of these unique productions will bristle with unparalleled vivacity upon the stage of the Théâtre du Jeu de Paume this year.

Story: Songs and Fragments at the Festival d'Aix-en-Provence

Songs and Fragments introduces two emblematic works of contemporary music and musical theatre in one sensational evening. A perfect production for all those with an interest in philosophy, madness in theatre, obsessions of the mind…


Eight Songs for a Mad King by Peter Maxwell Davies offers a musical experience not quite like any other, exploring in depth the madness of history’s ‘Mad King’, King George the III of the English Isles. Dramatic and innovative employments of vocal techniques and theatrical elements sets this piece apart from the crowd, revealing contemporary music as a means of probing the most complex aspects of the human soul, utilizing unusual sonorities to arouse intense and often disconcerting emotions.


György Kurtág’s Kafta-Fragmente plunges its audience into the existential world of prolific novelist Franz Kafka via a procession of striking violin and soprano miniatures. The piece becomes a living, breathing thing in its own right as it pushes back the boundaries of musical experimentation, creating enigmatic atmospheres that will undoubtedly stay with audiences long after the curtain drops.


Innovation and explorative sonic textures showcase the creativity of these two contemporary composers. Their respective compositions are inexorably demonstrative of the incredible ability of contemporary music to broaden the horizons of the listener as they are coaxed out of their comfort zones. Open up your minds and hearts, and allow these _ of Songs and Fragments to surprise and delight you at the 2024 Festival d’Art Lyrique in Aix-en-Provence, as performed at the Théâtre du Jeu de Paume!


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Théâtre du Jeu de Paume

17 - 21 rue de l'Opéra - 13100 Aix-en-Provence

History and Fun Facts about the Théâtre du Jeu de Paume

If you’ve never visited Aix-en-Provence’s glorious Théâtre du Jeu de Paume, take it from us – it’s worth the trip. Within a softly illuminated and intimate setting swathed in gorgeous purple, this Italian-style theatre welcomes the finest artists in the world of classical music this July. A buzzing hub of creative expression, this stunning venue opens up the stage to recitals, contemporary creations, intimate operas, and chamber music concerts.

A little historical anecdote - Louis XIV practiced the "paume", the ancestor of all racket sports, in 1660 at this very venue before its transformation into the iconic theatre it is today! Along with the Théâtre de la Reine in Versailles, it is one of the last examples of 18th century Italian-style theatre in France. Don’t hesitate to visit this divine homage to an era of stunning architecture, the art of beautiful singing and captivating movement, and aesthetic pleasures.

Fast facts
Capacity: 493
Handicap Accessible: Yes, please contact us at at the time of booking so that we can indicate this to the theatre.
Air conditioning: Yes
Heating: Yes
Coat Check: No


How to get to the Théâtre du Jeu de Paume in Aix-en-Provence?

The Théâtre du Jeu de Paume is located at 17-21 Rue de l'Opéra in the charming city of Aix-en-Provence.
From the SNCF train station, located in the bustling centre of Aix-en-Provence, it only takes a few minutes on foot to get to the Théâtre du Jeu de Paume 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 take you to the bus station located in the centre of the city.
If you come by car, the Carnot parking lot is located a 10 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.

What do I do when I get to the Théâtre du Jeu de Paume?

We invite you to arrive 30 minutes before the beginning of Songs and fragments and to then present your voucher at the front desk. The Théâtre du Jeu de Paume’s English-speaking staff members will guide you to your seats.

How long does Songs and Fragments last?

Songs and Fragments lasts approximately 1 hour and 30 minutes, with no intermission.

Can I take photos during the performance of Songs and Fragments?

In order not to disturb the artists on stage, and for the comfort of other guests, you are not permitted to photograph, film, or record the performance for the duration of Songs and Fragments. As long as the performance is not currently in session, feel free to take a snapshot of the Théâtre du Jeu de Paume to remember your night out!

Is Songs and Fragments accessible to an international audience or French speakers?

Both! The Théâtre du Jeu de Paume has been welcoming audiences from all over the world for many years. Songs and Fragments will feature two operas, one sung in English and the other in German, with surtitles provided in both English and French so that all spectators can enjoy the show in the incredible setting that is the Théâtre du Jeu de Paume.

Where will I be seated, and will I see the surtitles properly?

We offer seats in the first and second category that will provide the best possible view of the surtitles.

Does the Théâtre du Jeu de Paume have a specific dress code?

There is no particular dress code, but proper attire is appreciated.

If I'm late, will I still be allowed into the show?

We recommend that you check the dates, times, and venues shown on the tickets. Performances start at the time indicated.
Once the theatre doors have closed, you will not be guaranteed entry to the auditorium. In order not to disturb the performance, latecomers may only be accommodated during an intermission, when it takes place, without any guarantee of the seating indicated on the tickets.

Do I have to tip the ushers at the Théâtre du Jeu de Paume?

Ushers at the Théâtre du Jeu de Paume do not accept tips. It's not common.

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

Yes, this is absolutely 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 validated, you will receive your ticket by e-mail.
Due to the large number of requests that the Festival d'Aix-en-Provence has to manage, this process is usually completed within three working days.