A Heart-soaring Choir

AN OPERA FOR CHILDREN’S VOICES [original French title : DU CHŒUR À L’OUVRAGE]


Premiered on May 2017 at Théâtre de Caen (FR)

with children’s choirs : Maîtrise de Caen (choirmaster Olivier Opdebeeck), Maîtrise de Radio-France (choirmaster Morgan Jourdain) or Maîtrise des Bouches-du-Rhône (choirmaster Pascal Denoyer), depending on the productions | instrumental ensemble L’Instant Donné
Conception, music and stage direction Benjamin Dupé | Original libretto Marie Desplechin
Stage design Olivier Thomas | Light design  Christophe Forey | Costumes Marion Poey
Movement assistant Ana Gabriela Castro | Staging assistant Maud Morillon | Sound manager Arnaud de La Celle | Tech manager Julien Frenois | Administration, production and touring Loïck Soulas, Marine Termes, Hélène Roques

«  Stranded on an island after the boat that was taking them to their Christmas concert-place sank, a group of young singers find themselves on their own, with nothing much to do except keep the flame of the musical work. Despair, struggle for power, anti-sol-fa rebellion, vocal narcissism or playful rehearsals will lead to a dramatic dénouement : the breaking of the blue-eyed boy’s voice … Du chœur à l’ouvrage [A Heart-soaring Choir] is an opera that tells about childhood, music learning , and what is sacrificed as we grow up. On the set, forty children, no adults. They are the performers and characters of the customized story imagined by Marie Desplechin. The librettist took her inspiration from their lives, personalities and the teaching methods of choral singing, to sublimate her collected material into a fantastic, initiatory,  story that is in turns moving, farcical or disturbing. This was the opportunity for the composer Benjamin Dupé to write music that crosses the archetypes of the opera – airs, recitatives,  dramatic choruses – but also offers voice rituals and play with space, drawing its inventiveness in the endless sound possibilities the voice can suggest beyond singing. Precisely orchestrated for the musicians of the ensemble L’Instant Donné, occupying the resonant staging of Olivier Thomas, the music even invades the singers ‘s bodies, who move and heartily play under choreographer Ana Gabriel Castro’s direction. » 

Coproduction Comme je l’entends, les productions – théâtre de Caen – Nouveau théâtre de Montreuil – Ville de Marseille / Opéra – Pôle Arts de la scène / Friche La Belle de mai – Théâtre Durance, scène conventionnée de Château-Arnoux / Saint-Auban – Grand Théâtre de Provence – Festival International d’Art Lyrique d’Aix-en-Provence – L’Instant Donné – Maîtrise de Radio France. Commissioned by French Ministry of Culture. Sponsored by Orange Fundation. Supported by Région Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur.

photos
photos © Christophe Raynaud De Lage
music
trailer
tour
 performed • 6 May 2019 · Comédie de Clermont - Clermont-Ferrand • 8 March 2019 · Opera House - Limoges • 7 March 2019 · Opera House - Limoges • 14 June 2018 · Grand Théâtre de Provence – Aix-en-juin Festival - Aix-en-Provence • 13 June 2018 · Grand Théâtre de Provence – Aix-en-juin Festival - Aix-en-Provence • 30 March 2018 · Théâtre Durance - Château-Arnoux / Saint-Auban • 15 March 2018 · La Criée national theater with Marseille Opera - Marseille • 13 March 2018 · La Criée national theater with Marseille Opera - Marseille • 23 November 2017 · Nouveau Théâtre de Montreuil - Montreuil • 22 November 2017 · Nouveau Théâtre de Montreuil - Montreuil • 21 November 2017 · Nouveau Théâtre de Montreuil - Montreuil • 18 November 2017 · Nouveau Théâtre de Montreuil - Montreuil • 17 November 2017 · Nouveau Théâtre de Montreuil - Montreuil • 16 November 2017 · Nouveau Théâtre de Montreuil - Montreuil • 22 May 2017 · Théâtre de Caen - Caen • 20 May 2017 · Théâtre de Caen - Caen • 19 May 2017 · Théâtre de Caen - Caen

> go to the espace pro and download the file of the show (French only)

photos © Christophe Raynaud De Lage