By Maddy 07.05.19

The night started for us by getting to the Centre National de l’Audiovisuel in Dudelange, getting our tickets and being invited for a little snack and a drink before the show started. After the little reception, we entered the cinema and chose our comfortable seats for the next 3h45 (do not worry, there are breaks). 

The opera show had place in London at the Royal Opera House, and it was transmitted live in 24 countries and over 1000 cinemas. Before the performance started we were introduced to the performers of Faust (Michael Fabiano, tenor), Méphistophélès (Erwin Schrott, bass-baritone), Marguerite (Irina Lungu, soprano) and the conductor Dan Ettinger.

The Faust we saw is the opera written in 1859 by Gounod. It brings the story of Faust to the 19th century Paris. The audience is brought to this time with the help of the set created to resemble the architecture by re-creating the Cabaret d’Enfer, a box from the Paris Opera and the organ loft of Notre-Dame. Faust is an old philosopher that has a last desire, to be young again and be loved by Marguerite. Faust makes a deal with the Devil, Méphistophélès, promising him his soul. After Marguerite gives herself to Faust, he leaves her as she doesn’t represent youth love anymore. When Valentin, Marguerite’s brother, comes back from the war, he is furious to find his sister pregnant. Will Faust redeem his actions and saves his and Marguerite’s soul?

As soon as the first note was played, the entrance to another time and place was created. In the first three acts, Méphistophélès was hiding his true face very well while helping Faust to get Marguerite’s love, giving money to the people and encouraging lust. In the last 2 acts, the feelings surrounding the scenes are dark and hopeless, as the war’s effects can be sensed. So, Méphistophélès changes his way of attracting people to his side. Now we find him in the church, cutting deals and influencing Marguerite to the ultimate sin.

A scene from Faust by Gounod @ Royal Opera House

I must admit that it was the first time I went to see an opera show and I wasn’t sure how I would feel to see a live transmission of an opera show. I was amazed. It is the perfect combination of music, acting and ballet. My personal favorite was Méphistophélès, as he portrayed the character as it was himself.

Unfortunately, the cinema-opera live season has ended, but the season for 2019/2020 will be soon announced. If you are interested, you can see the news here.

Also, if you want to experience as soon as possible this experience (which I recommend), you could see the ballet shows from the Royal Opera House: Within the Golden Hour/New Cherkaoui/Flight Pattern on 16.05 and Romeo and Juliette on 11.06. The price of a ticket is 30€ and 25€ with a reduction, you can buy them directly on site or from here.