La Monnaie’s 2017-18 Season Features 8 Opera Productions, Recitals By Dessay, Keenlyside & Degout Among Others

By David Salazar

La Monnaie announced its 2017-18 season last week. As always, it features a plethora of offerings across opera, ballet, concert and chamber music. Let’s take a look at the offerings for opera lovers.

Philippe Boesmans’ “Pinocchio” opens on Sept. 9, 2017, with Stéphane Degout leading the cast.

Rossini’s “Tancredi” will appear for just two concert performances on October 11 and 14 with Marie-Nicole Lemieux in the title role. The remaining cast members include Salome Jicia, Enea Scala, Ugo Guagliardo, Lena Belkina and Blandine Staskiewicz. Guilano Carella conducts the La Monnaie Symphony Orchestra.

Beethoven’s “Leonore,” the original version of his famed opera “Fidelio,” gets one concert performance on Oct. 26, 2017 with a cast featuring Marlis Petersen in the title role, Maximiliano Schmidt as Florestan, Johannes Weisser as Don Pizarro, Tareq Nazmi as Don Fernando, Dimitry Ivashcenko as Rocco and Robin Johanssen as Marzelline. René Jacobs conducts the Freiburger Barockorchester in what is expected to be a historically accurate performance style.

Mozart’s “Lucio Silla” gets a full staging by German director Tobias Kratzer with Antonello Manacorda conducting. Jeremy Ovenden leads the cast in the title role. He will be joined by Lennek Ruiten, Anna Bonitatibus, Simona Saturová, Ilse Eerens and Carlo Allemano. The eight-show run starts on Oct. 29, 2017.

Alain Altinoglu will conduct Olivier Py’s production of Poulenc’s “Dialogue des Carmélites” with such stars as Anne-Catherine Gillet, Patricia Petibon, Sophie Koch, Nicolas Cavallier and Véronique Gens among those in the massive cast.  There will be 10 performances of the work starting on Dec. 8, 2017.

Starting on Jan. 16, 2018, Belgian audiences will be treated to a double bill featuring Rihm’s “Das Gehege” and Dallapiccola’s “Il Prigioniero.” Angeles Blancas Gulin appears in both operas which will be conducted by Franck Ollu and directed by Andrea Breth.

Then comes the famous double bill of “Cavalleria Rusticana” and “Pagliacci” in the production by Damiano Michieletto that sets both works in the same village, with each opera commenting on the other. Evelino Pidò conducts a cast that includes Eva-Maria Westbroek as Santuzza, Ainhoa Arteta as Nedda, Carlo Ventre as Canio and Dimitri Platanias as Alfio. There will be 11 performances between March 6 and 22. The company is giving the performance on March 20 for vulnerable groups, schools, and artists.

Olivier Py’s production of Wagner’s “Lohengrin” starts on April 19, 2018, with tenors Eric Cutler and Josef Kaiser alternating the title role. Ingela Brimberg and Meagan Miller each portray Elsa while Elena Pankratova and Sabine Hogrefe take turns as Ortrud. Altinoglu conducts the 10 performances of the opera.

The opera season closes with yet another double bill, this time with two Bartok works, including his opera “Bluebeard’s Castle” and ballet “The Miraculous Mandarin.” Altinoglu conducts Ante Jerkunica and Nora Gubisch in the opera, which will be staged by Johan Simons. There will be seven performances starting on June 8, 2018.


Anna Caterina Antonacci will showcase her talents in “La Voix Humaine,” which will be programmed alongside Bosmans “Capriccio for two pianos and orchestra” and Poulenc’s double piano concerto on Sept. 24, 2017.

Dvorak’s Requiem will also get a performance with Veronika Dzhioeva, Anna Larsson, Christian Elsner and Franz-Josef Selig on Nov. 17, 2018.

Finally, Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony gets a performance on June 30, 2018, with Annette Dasch, Nora Bubisch, Thomas Blondelle and Dietrich Henschel as the soloists.

All concerts will be conducted by Altinoglu.


There will eight singers giving recitals, one for each month of the season. Anna Bonitatibus gets October’s recital, Karine Deshayes appears in November and Stéphane Degout closes out 2017 with a recital in December. Simon Keenlyside gets the first recital of 2018 in January, followed by Dietrich Henschel in February, Pavol Breslik in March, Natalie Dessay in April and Christianne Slotijn in June.