Les Vêpres siciliennes
The French have occupied Sicily, and Hélène is held hostage by Montfort, the French governor, who has had her brother executed. She turns to the partisan Jean Procida and the rebellious patriot Henri in her bid for vengeance.
News and features
What did you think of the live relay of Stefan Herheim’s Royal Opera production?
Armenian soprano replaces Marina Poplavskaya due to illness.
A quick guide to Verdi's first grand opera.
What did you think of Stefan Herheim's production of Verdi's grand opera?
Does adult content in in many productions of dramatic works such as Elektra or Wozzeck heighten the theatrical experience, or diminish the art form?
Stefan Herheim’s new production of Verdi’s grand opera has its premiere on 17 October.
Les Vêpres siciliennes is one of Verdi’s lesser-known mature operas, but was vital to his development as a composer. It was created for the Paris Opéra in 1855, providing Verdi with an opportunity to embrace the elaborate style and traditions of French grand opera.
Stefan Herheim brings Verdi’s tale of revenge, family relations and patriotism to Covent Garden for the first time. His imaginative production draws parallels between the opera and the opera house for which it was written, including a spectacular re-creation of the Paris Opéra itself. Musically, the work contains impressive choruses, passionate duets and some wonderful showpiece arias for the principal singers. Particular highlights include Procida’s aria on returning to Sicily ‘Et toi, Palerme’, the Act IV duet ‘De courroux et d’effroi’ in which Hélène expresses her sympathy for Henri’s dilemma and Hélène’s brilliant Act V boléro, ‘Merci, jeunes amis’.
Generous philanthropic support from
Mrs Susan A Olde OBE, Mrs Aline Foriel-Destezet, Mr and Mrs Baha Bassatne and The Maestro’s Circle
A co-production with
The Royal Danish Opera, Copenhagen
There will be cameras filming in the auditorium on 29 October and 4 November. Seats with a partially restricted view, due to cameras, are available at a discount of 25% by ringing the Box Office on +44(0)20 7304 4000.
The performance lasts about 3 hours 50 minutes | Including two intervals
Sung in French with English surtitles
|Set designs||Philipp Fürhofer|
|Costume designs||Gesine Voellm|
|Lighting design||Anders Poll|
|Choreography||Andre de Jong|