Festival Aix-en-Provence to Live Stream Kaija Saariaho and Sofi Oksanen’s New Opera ‘Innocence’

By Chris Ruel
Photo credit: Toni Härkönen

Festival Aix-en-Provence is set to live stream Kaija Saariaho and Sofi Oksanen’s new opera, “Innocence,” on July 10, 2021 at 2:00 pm EDT on Arte Concert.

The opera had its in-person world premiere at the Festival on July 3.

Directed by Simon Stone, Saariaho and Oksanen’s opera presents the story of a fictional school shooting in Helsinki, and the trauma left in its wake.

“Innocence” stars Magdalena Kožená as the Waitress; Sandrine Piau as the Mother-in-Law; Tuomas Pursio as the Father-in-Law; Lilian Farahani as the Bride, and Markus Nykänen as the Groom. The orchestra is the renowned London Symphony Orchestra, which is joined by the Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir.

The opera is sung in English, Finnish, Czech, Romanian, French, Swedish, German, Spanish, and Greek with titles in French and English. While Oksanen penned the Finnish libretto, the multilingual version is by Aleksi Barriere.

The work was commissioned and co-produced by Festival Aix-en-Provence, Finnish National Opera and Ballet, Dutch National Opera. Royal Opera House Covent Garden, and San Francisco Opera.