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Experience The Legendary Grandeur Of Versailles

The grand spectacle of Louis XIV's Versailles is legendary. Now, it is yours to experience. In partnership with the Chateau de Versailles, Trianon Palace Versailles, A Waldorf Astoria Hotel is pleased to offer exclusive packages granting access to the Royal Opera. Each package includes show tickets and breakfast at La Veranda, with upgrades available for hotel accommodation and performance seating. During your stay, enjoy a gastronomic dinner at Gordon Ramsay au Trianon restaurant, awarded two stars at the Michelin Guide. Delight in the endless pleasures of La Ville Soleil, and discover the extraordinary events that have shaped Versailles into one of the world's most splendid destinations.

  • Versailles Festival Package, including an overnight stay, breakfast at La Veranda restaurant, and seating at your choice of Versailles show


Handel : Glory to God and the King of England

The Sixteen, choir and orchestra
Harry Christophers, conductor
Concernant le programme, il faut aller à la ligne après « Dixit Dominus »
Royal Chapel
Tuesday 1st july - 8pm
Duration : 1h45 intermission included

All through his life, Handel wrote masterpieces of sacred choral music for exceptional occasions.

First among them is the Coronation ceremony for King George II in 1727, for which Handel composed the famous four Coronation Anthems, which remain landmarks for royal coronations of the English monarchy. Written to be interpreted in Westminster Abbey, these four bravura works require the “grand format” which Handel excels at: triumphant choruses, trumpets and cymbals celebrate God’s and the King’s Glory with force never reached before. Taking Purcell’s great compositions as an example, Handel transfigures them through the sheer force of his genius.

He combines the three traditions acquired over two decades: German polyphony, English tradition and the brio learnt in Italy. Handel’s first choral masterpiece, Dixit Dominus, dates from his Italian period.

Dixit Dominus was a private order, probably from his protector Marchese Ruspoli, a sumptuous and virtuoso treatment of this text glorifying the God of Armies. The creation in a Roman church in July 1707 of this first masterpiece also left a lasting imprint on the history of music.

This concert brings together two of the most splendid choral works written by the young Handel, just before he started working on the great English oratorios of his mature years.


Dixit Dominus 4 Coronation Anthems

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Handel : Messiah, the sixteen

Katherine Watson, soprano Catherine Wyn-Rogers, mezzo-soprano Joshua Ellicott, tenor Christopher Purves, baryton bass The Sixteen Choir & Orchestra Harry Christophers, conductor Royal Chapel Wednesday 2 july 2014 - 8pm Duration : 3h intermission included

In his time Handel was famous mainly as a composer of Italian opera; his fame grew in England when he conceived a new form: the Oratorio.

He deployed the dramatic resources and the affects of the opera on religious themes, in English, while using monumental choirs with exceptional brio.

Martial, ecstatic, imbued with piety and drama, the Messiah, an absolute masterpiece, has never left the repertoire since it was created.

Harry Christophers is an inspired interpreter of Handel, whom he has served for two decades in the great British tradition, on period instruments, with his choir The Sixteen, among the most famous, and a quartet of English soloists: the vision which runs in the veins of these interpreters is heir to more than two and a half centuries of Handel cult in England.

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The 7 last words of Christ on the Cross

Jean-François Chiama, tenor
Insula orchestra
Laurence Equilbey, conductor

Royal Chapel
Saturday 5 july 2014 - 7pm
Duration : 1h15 without intermission

For this concert, Laurence Equilbey conducting her young orchestra with the most brilliant musicians on period instruments, proposes the original version of Joseph Haydn’s The Seven Last words of Christ on the Cross, composed for orchestra alone.

All too rarely given nowadays, this is the exclusively instrumental music commissioned in 1785 by a canon of the Cadiz cathedral, illustrating the Bible text to be performed on Good Friday. At its creation in 1787, it was acknowledged as one of Joseph Haydn’s major work and this intensely dramatic music and its exceptional fervor “necessarily causes the deepest impression in the soul of the least informed listener”, wrote the composer that same year.

A master of symphony music in the classic period and the most famous composer of his time in Europe, Haydn composed a work overflowing with ideas: this great symphony in seven movements magnificently depicts the feelings created by the death of Christ, until the famous earthquake marking the moment of death. Each of the seven words will be intoned by a tenor, as during the religious ceremony where it was created; Laurence Equilbey’s inspired interpretation will echo majestically in the Chapelle Royale of Versailles

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Roberta Invernizzi, Bellezza
Yetzabel Arias Fernandez, Piacere
Martin Oro, Disinganno
Krystian Adam, Tempo
La Risonanza
Fabio Bonizzoni, conductor

Royal Opera
Sunday 6 july 2014 – 4pm
Duration : 2h40 intermission included

During his Roman years, Handel essentially worked on commissions from his prestigious patrons. His protectors, wealthy music lovers were Ruspoli, Ottoboni, but also Cardinal Benedetto Pamphili (1653-1730): a philosopher, theologian and poet who gave Handel the libretto of a Roman oratorio, a sumptuous musical genre, which has all the traits of the opera (a form of music forbidden in Rome) without being one.

Trionfo is the first oratorio composed by Handel and a first masterpiece, in a style in which the composer would reach summits. Probably created on 14 May 1707, with Corelli conducting, this Trionfo contains scores of beautiful arias, which Handel would use in many of his operas to come.

The virtuoso rivalry of Beauty, kindled by Pleasure, and Time escorted by Disillusionment, inspired the young Handel to deploy the qualities of his Italian style and his exceptional talent for melody and composition for the orchestra, at only 22…Trionfo is flamboyant score, which he often reused and finally readapted in English at the end of his career.

Fabio Bonizzoni has become a specialist of Handel’s Italian period and an inspired interpreter of this music with a quartet of brilliant soloists, who will give this work its operatic dimension and its emotion.

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Roberta Invernizzi, Soprano
Yetzabel Arias Fernandez, Soprano
Marina De Liso, Alto
Krystian Adam, Tenor
La Risonanza
Fabio Bonizzoni, conductor and  harspichord »
Pour l’heure, il faudrait mettre 8.30p.

Please De plus, le texte est celui du concert Entre Elle & Lui (les deux ont été inversés).

Sunday 6 July 2014 - 8:30

A private evening with Prince Ruspoli in the Petit Trianon’s most beautiful spaces.

Entre elle & lui: all the magic of the songs created by Michel Legrand for the cinema, interpreted by Natalie Dessay. The most popular of all sopranos revisits the tunes from Les Demoiselles de Rochefort or Peau d’âne in the gardens of the Orangerie of the Château de Versailles (outdoor performance).

After more than 60 years spent composing, Michel Legrand is more creative than ever. Constantly on the lookout for new encounters and new collaborations, he is a tireless inventor, refusing to establish a hierarchy between musical styles. In 2011 and 2012 he formed a singer/pianist duet with Natalie Dessay for a few dates on tour.

Their work together was such a revelation for both artists that Michel Legrand decided to orchestrate his major musical hits as quartets with Natalie Dessay singing. We are offering the public a concert with the greatest tunes revisited by these international artists, in the exceptional setting of the Château de Versailles Orangerie.

Fans will be thrilled to have Michel Legrand back at the piano with his trio in the first part and to be carried away by Natalie Dessay’s fabulous voice, singing the maestro’s wonderful songs, together with the quartet. From Jacque Demy to Alan and Marilyn Bergman, through to Claude Nougaro and Eddy Marnay, this exercise in style with all its grace and beauty of sound guarantees an intense musical moment.

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Opera Events



Philippe Jaroussky : Stabat Mater

Philippe Jaroussky, contre-ténor
Valer Sabadus, contre-ténor
Christina Pluhar, direction

Royal Chapel
Tuesday 8 July 2014 - 8pm
Duration : 1h40 without intermission

Pergolesi’s Stabat Mater is one of the most iconic works of baroque music and has left a deep imprint on the world of 18th century music, especially in France. It was the Italian castrati of the Chapelle de Royale of Versailles themselves who brought the score back from Italy and promoted it with passion at Court as at the Concert Spirituel. When Paris discovered the Stabat, all admired the revolutionary work of a young genius from Naples, who died too young at 26….Its success never waned for a century. To confer due magnificence to this glorious duet of angelic voices deploring Mary’s grief at the foot of the cross, two exceptional singers and a musical vision are needed.

Philippe Jaroussky is the bearer of a tradition miraculously preserved by his sensitive and admirable talent, which the international public has carried to the firmament of singers. Familiar of Versailles, he returns to the Chapelle Royale to glorify Pergolesi for our greatest joy. Valer Sabadus, who has been conquering the heart of the public in the last three seasons, since his debuts in Versailles: from Hasse (Didone) to Cavalli (Elena) and Vinci (Ataserse), is the other half of the duet in this iconic work. Christina Pluhar, a passionate scholar of baroque traditions and scores, is the mastermind of this exceptional concert, to which she gives the golden hues of Neapolitan baroque churches, for which Pergolesi created this masterpiece.

Pergolesi’s divine harmonies return to the Chapelle Royale…

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