Victor Hugo's Ruy Blas
Until September 26, 2021
5 rue des Vignes, 75016 Paris
Capacity 300 seats
English Subtitles and Programme included
French with English subtitles
An undeniable pairing? Paris, theatre, and Victor Hugo. After the literary and theatrical success of Les Miserables and Notre-Dame de Paris, the celebrated French author again enthralls with Ruy Blas, commoner-in-disguise who dares to love Spanish royalty. Considered one of Hugo’s best works, we invite you to delve deeper into the complex world of Victor Hugo in a historic Parisian playhouse.
Far from his beloved city of lights, Victor Hugo brings us to the year 1699 when Charles II ruled Spain with his wife, Queen Maria.
This adaptation takes a colorful twist on an ageless journey of unrequited love and unresolved rivalries. Set in a turn of the century Spanish royal court, a common poet finds himself tied up in a plot of vengence. Humiliated and dishonoured, the commoner-in-disguise is brought into ever-tightening circles with the woman he loves, the Queen Maria.
The heroic romantic finds himself further shackled into a story of political corruption and revenge, with an ascension into the royal spotlight ending as abruptly as it came about.
Step into the grand auditorium of the Théâtre le Ranelagh, and prepare to be wowed by the ornate carved oak panelling adorning the orchestra and balconies, as well as the intricately decorated ceiling. Looking around you it’s not hard to believe that this building is listed as one of Paris’ 'historical monuments'…
The Ranelagh is tucked away in the heart of Paris’ 16th arrondissement, a few paces away from the Eiffel tower on one side, and the bois de Boulogne on the other. It is built on the site of the old Château de Boulainvilliers, the estate was at the time right outside the city and covered 8 hectares (almost 12 football fields!). The theatre itself is rich in history and over 120 years old, after being converted to replace the chateau's music room by the landowner of the time into his own private venue where he could invite all the best-known actors and musicians in Paris to play there for him and his friends. After his death, the entire estate was destroyed to make way for the expanding city of Paris. All, that is, except for the theatre which was miraculously saved, and to this day still stands in its original spot! Don't be fooled by the unassuming exterior, once inside the Théâtre Ranelagh you can feast your eyes on its original decor of plush red velvet seating and carved oak paneling throughout.
The theatre is designed in the French style, meaning all of the seats are directly facing the stage and giving the auditorium a rectangular shape. The venue also features a small bar in its foyer complete with a fireplace and enough seating for up to 80 people, perfect for a drink before the performance.
Not just a theatre
For a time in the early 1900s, the theatre was used as a cinema, which was incredibly popular. The director of the world famous film Les enfants du paradis loved the theatre, and often programmed the film to be screened there. The cinema tradition still exists at the Ranelagh, and films are still screened there from time to time! In addition to film screenings and a show programme rich with plays by classic French playrights, the Théâtre Ranelagh holds puppet shows for younger audiences and other community events.
Handicap Accessible? Yes, please contact us to ensure proper seating in accessible areas
Air conditioning? No