Opera in three acts with music by Francis Poulenc and libretto by the latter and Emmet Lavery, based on the play with the same name by Georges Bernanos, who in turn was inspired by the novel The Song at the Scaffold by Gertrud von Le Fort
Premiered at Teatro alla Scala in Milan on the 26th of January, 1957 

Musical production Teatro Cervantes de Málaga
Stage production Teatro Villamarta de Jerez de la Frontera and Teatro Cervantes de Málaga

Blanche de la Force  Ainhoa Arteta
Madame Lidoine  Maite Alberola
Madame de Croissy  Ana Ibarra
Mother Marie Eglè Wyss
Sister Constance  Nuria García-Arrés
Chevalier de la Force  David Alegret
Chaplain  Luis Pacetti

Orquesta Filarmónica de Málaga
Coro de Ópera de Málaga

Stage director Francisco López
Choir director María del Mar Muñoz Varo
Musical director Pedro Halffter

photo ©Jose Carlos Nievas

The true story of sixteen Carmelite nuns from the city of Compiègne who lived under Robespierre's Reign of Terror. The religious services performed by this congregation were prohibited, and the nuns were accused of conspiring to reestablish the monarchy. In addition to being persecuted, they were arrested on June 22nd, 1794 and later judged by a revolutionary tribunal that condemned them to capital punishment. They were guillotined on July 17th, 1794. Only Mother Marie de l’Incarnation managed to escape, writing about her experiences in a book that was published after her death in 1836. Almost a century later, this story was taken up by the German writer Gertrud von Le Fort in 1932 in her novel The Song at the Scaffold, in which she added the fictional character of Blanche de la Force. In 1947, the Catholic novelist George Bernanos wrote a screenplay for its film version, but the project was suspended in 1948 when the director chosen for the film died. Finally, Bernanos' text was published in the form of a play, Dialogues des carmélites, first performed in 1952. Poulenc identified himself completely with its content, and was chosen to conceive both the music and the libretto for the opera.
In this deeply spiritual lyric creation, the composer succeeded in merging a profane melodic style with defined aesthetics that appeal to deep religious feelings. The dialogues are mainly recitative, with a melodic line that closely follows the text. The harmonies are sumptuous, with occasional captivating turns that are characteristic of the composer's style.

(!) Use of cookiesWe use own and third party cookies to improve our services by analyzing
your browsing habits.
We need your consent to use cookies that require prior approval.
For further information please read our Cookies Policy.