royal opera versailles


Using a complex system of movable floors on winches and hoists, Arnoult succeeded in creating an adjustable hall that was built to last. “Banquet of the gardes du corps given in the Opéra de Versailles, 1 October 1789.”. The excellent acoustics of the opera house are at least partly due to its wooden interior. As a "playground", the pop artist is entitled to a huge proscenium in the center of the Royal Opera of Versailles with an inverted decor and a background, the hall. Major work carried out between 2007 and 2009 fortunately meant that both were removed. Completed in 1770 when France was the most powerful country in … Coeyman, Barbara, "Sites of Indoor Musical-Theatrical Productions at Versailles". Although he desired an Opera for his beloved Versailles, during the second half of Louis' reign, most operas, ballets and other staged divertissements for court and the public appeared indoors, in theatres or in other sites arranged as required for individual productions. The Banquet of the Guards, five years later on 1st October 1789, was the last event held here during the Ancien Régime. The ceiling features a canvas by Louis Jean-Jacques Durameau in which Apollo and the Muses are depicted.[29]. It was noticeably more colourful, with emerald green, blue and silver as the predominant colours. Inaugurated in 1770 on the occasion of the wedding of the future Louis XVI to the young Marie-Antoinette, the Royal Opera quickly became one of the most beautiful rooms in Europe. In time the royal residences equipped themselves little by little with fixed theatres, although they often continued to use temporary structures and installations one could disassemble in various places: galleries, staircases, lounges, gardens[11] These staged productions were important for many reasons. Braham, Allan. The theme of the decoration is related to Apollo and the Olympian deities. Explore the Palace of Versailles and its expansive gardens without leaving the security of your own home on a virtual guided tour. For larger productions, the Grand Manège (the covered riding arena) in the Grand Écurie was converted for more elaborate entertainments, but the space had limitations. During the period of its usage, however, it was a beautiful example of royal lavishness and love for theatrical performances, and the fact that attending opera was once again the fashionable thing to do for the upper class, thanks in part to Queen Marie Antoinette's patronage, should not be underestimated.[34]. The architecture of the French Enlightenment . "Theatres for Opera and Ballet during the Reigns of Louis XIV and Louis XV." The … Early Music 18.1 (1990): 22-37. MIKA’s critically acclaimed performance, A L’Opera Royal De Versailles, will be released as a live album today. The interior decoration by … Versailles: L'opéra Royal. The Royal Opera of Versailles is celebrating its 250th anniversary with a beautiful concert series. The app includes the audioguide tour of the Palace and an interactive map of the Estate. They're brought back to life in the … [citation needed], It opened May 16, 1770, with Lully's Persée. Royal Opera of Versailles, Versailles (must see) The Royal Opera of Versailles is well worth a visit, not only for the beauty its interior, but also for the feeling of stepping back in time. The Opéra was most recently closed in June of 2007 for an extensive two year renovation to bring the backstage and production areas up to safety standards. Gousset, Jean-Paul, and Raphaël Masson. Inaugurated in 1770 during the reign of Louis XV, it was at the time the largest concert hall in Europe, and was also a great technical achievement and an impressive feat of decorative refinement. It had lavish “permanent” decoration with movable features and allowed spectators to be seated in boxes on different levels. During this fête an additional theatre was erected inside the chateau for the presentation of three other plays by Molière: Les Fâcheux, Le Mariage Forcé, and Tartuffe, which premiered in an incomplete, albeit contentious, form. None of these theatres survived this fête. Constructed of papier-mâché, which was either gilded or painted to resemble marble and lapis lazuli, the theater seated 1,200 spectators who attended the debut of Molière's George Dandin on 18 July 1668. The Opéra de Versailles converted for the use of the Sénat of the Third Republic, ca. As with the Plaisirs de l’Île enchantée, this theater was destroyed shortly after the end of the fête. The Opéra Royal can serve either as a theater for opera, stage plays, or orchestral events, when it can accommodate an audience of 712, or as a ballroom, when the floor of the orchestra level of the auditorium can be raised to the level of the stage. To accommodate the members of the Sénat, the north wing of the château, in the part that faces the city of Versailles, over 300 apartments have been arranged for the private use by members of the upper house of France’s parliament. Few other than classical musicians have performed at the Royal Opera of Versailles… Versailles’s treasures down to the smallest details! [27], On 1 October 1789, the gardes du corps du roi held a banquet to welcome the Flanders Regiment, which had just arrived to strengthen protection for the royal family against the revolutionary rumblings that were being heard in Paris. The Opéra reopened its doors in September of 2009, and has since carried out an expanded and ambitious regular series of operatic, balletic, and concert performances, especially celebrating the works of the Baroque and Classical periods most closely associated with the Opéra and the Palace of Versailles. JSTOR. The Royal Opera of Versailles (French: ) is the main theatre and opera house of the Palace of Versailles. However, with Louis XIV's dislike for Paris – due in large part to his flight from the Tuileries in 1651 – and his increasing wish to keep his court at Versailles, the king approved the construction of a larger theater in 1685. Paris: Artlys, 2010. It was used for royal weddings and to honour foreign sovereigns, for whom balls or shows were organised. Let's plunge into interactive frescoes and discovers the paintings, sculptures and engravings in a new light. 1770. In that year, the Comptes des Bâtiments du Roi record payments for a theater that was constructed on the ground floor of the chateau between the corps de logis and the Aile de Midi. The location’s new purpose led to major modifications such as the installation of a glass roof in place of the ceiling by Durameau. [9], Long before the Opera Royal was dreamed of, theatre was becoming an important part of French society. Print. Most of the remaining original machinery was destroyed, and a nonsensical full-height fireproof wall and an iron curtain cut off the front of the stage. The stage and its mechanics were little affected by the works, but the changes made to the hall altered its original layout (especially the King’s private box) and appearance (uniform red paint with gold crosses and framed with false red marble covered over the colours of the 18th century). Opéra Royal Désireux de doter le Château de Versailles d'une salle de spectacles où pourrait se déployer tout le faste requis par les représentations de pièces à machines qu'il affectionne, Louis XIV envisage … The performances designed for this exceptional venue revive the period where Versailles was one of Europe's main musical creation centres. Today, with its superb acoustics and magnificent décor, the Opéra represents one of the finest 18th century opera houses in Europe. The Assembly was held in the Royal Opera which had been transformed into an assembly hall. The theatre was used on a small number of occasions for official performances, such as the one for the inauguration of the new museum on 10 June 1837. By 2024, the Great Stables at the Palace of Versailles will be home to a campus of excellence dedicated to arts & crafts and heritage. [6] The nobility had a lot to do with the uprising of theatre during this time. For the festivities provided during the visit of Grand Duke Paul and Grand Duchess Marie, the Menus-Plaisirs recorded expenses at more than 200,000 livres for the second quarter of 1782. [21], Acutely aware of the need for a larger and more permanent theater, as early as the 1740s Louis XV, seriously considered reviving Louis XIV's plans for a permanent salle de spectacle to be constructed at the northern end of the Aile de Nobles. In 1748, the Escalier des ambassadeurs was converted into a theatre, in which the Marquise de Pompadour staged and acted in a number of plays. Versailles Tourism; Versailles Hotels; Bed and Breakfast Versailles; Versailles Holiday Rentals Coeyman, Barbara. As a ballroom – its largest and most spectacular configuration – the theatre contained a single-level floor which stretched from the entrance to the back of the stage (over 45 metres). The theatre was last used for a celebration of the French Court on 18 July 1784, when a ball was given in honour of the King of Sweden Gustave III. The Royal Opera of Versailles (French: Opéra royal de Versailles) is the main theatre and opera house of the Palace of Versailles.Designed by Ange-Jacques Gabriel, it is also known as the Théâtre … Two years later, the theatre was dismantled when the Escalier des ambassadeurs was destroyed for the construction of the appartement de Madame Adélaïde. Indeed, his performance as Apollo is what earned him the name Sun King. Little divertissements for the court, they also were at times used by royalty for their own reasons. Fortunately, the Chamber of Deputies returned to Paris in 1879 before the complete destruction of the stage. 3D Model See a 3D Model of the Royal Opera There's more to this Opera … Virtual tour of the Royal Opera House at The Palace of Versailles in 3D. With the return of the court to Versailles in 1722, spaces used by Louis XIV were once again pressed into service for the needs of the court. The first such theater was constructed for the fête of the Plaisirs de l’Île enchantée, which was held in 1664. Gabriel reverted to an old design by J.H. The interior decoration by Augustin Pajou is constructed almost entirely of wood, painted to resemble marble in a technique known as faux marble. Broadcast on French national TV two weeks ago, the performance was celebrated … While the château did see some activity under Napoléon I (redecoration of the parts of the queen's apartment for the empress Marie-Louise) and Louis XVIII, the Opéra did not reopen again until 1837, when Louis-Philippe redecorated the theater and presented Molière’s Le Misanthrope. During the French Enlightenment, the theatre became a place where political and social ideas were considered myths and superstitions were tested. With a plan more grandiose than the theatre of the Tuileries, the construction of this new theatre was much lauded by contemporary descriptions of Versailles. Meanwhile, the aristocracy and church paid no taxes, and the bourgeoisie paid for the monarchy's tastes. The excellent acoustics of the opera house are at least partly due to its wooden interior. The decoration of the Opéra was directed by Augustin Pajou, who executed the bas-reliefs panels that decorate the front of the loges. At the last minute the architect abandoned the idea of a fourth row of boxes, replacing them with a colonnade, and the finished design was one of perfect elegance and harmony. This situation remained unchanged for most of the following reign, despite the fact that Jacques-Ange Gabriel, made First Architect to the King in 1742, continued working tirelessly on the design. Coeyman, "Theaters for Opera and Ballet during the reigns of Louis XIV and Louis XV", pp. The fête featured a number of theatrical productions that were staged throughout the grounds in temporary theaters. Louis XIV wanted to give the Palace a concert hall that could accommodate the luxurious decor needed to host shows with machines, which he was particularly fond of. The Royal Opera of Versailles is the main theatre and opera house of the Palace of Versailles. 1876. New Haven: Yale University Press, 1995. Kalnein, Wend von. Revolutionary journalist Jean-Paul Marat described the banquet as a counter-revolutionary orgy, with the soldiers ripping off the blue-white-red cockades they had been wearing and replacing them with white ones, the color that symbolized the Bourbon monarchy. Blaise-Henri Arnoult, First Theatre Technician to the King, was entrusted with installing the mechanics and everything relating to the stage, and he produced a true masterpiece. [13], The Grand Divertissement royal of 1668, which celebrated the end of the War of Devolution, witnessed the construction of a luxurious temporary theater built in the gardens on the site of the future Bassin de Bacchus. Richelieu wanted to create an image of the king (and France) that displayed well roundedness in all thing, a society who dabbled not only in politics or court, but music and art and theatre. Jules Hardouin-Mansart and Carlo Vigarani presented the King with different designs for a theatre (the idea at the time was for a Ballet Hall), but none of them really pleased the sovereign. The proscenium is formed by two pairs of columns, coupled in depth, with their entablature. Auditorium of the Opéra de Versailles during the celebrations of the wedding of the dauphin and Marie Antoinette in 1770. [3], The house is located at the northern extremity of the north wing of the palace. [35] This was to be one of the most elaborate events staged at Versailles during the Second Empire. Ceiling of the Opéra royal de Versailles. Louis XV, persuaded by Gabriel and thinking of the future marriages of his three grandsons, eventually commissioned the construction of the Royal Opera. We hope to get through this difficult period without letting go of what makes the Estate’s core greatness, so that it continues to shine throughout the world ", Catherine Pégard, President. In 1855, Napoleon III brought back the lavishness of the Ancien Régime when he held a banquet for Queen Victoria here, and likewise in 1864 on the occasion of a gala performance for the King Consort of Spain. The Royal Opera of Versailles (French: .mw-parser-output .noitalic{font-style:normal}Opéra royal de Versailles) is the main theatre and opera house of the Palace of Versailles. MIKA (@mikainstagram) posted on Instagram: “Some beautiful moments captured from the Versailles Royal Opera House show. In spite of the excellent acoustics and the opulent setting, the Opéra was not often used during the reign of Louis XVI, largely on grounds of cost. The overall architecture of the hall and building was entrusted to Gabriel who, after numerous modifications, built a theatre which incorporated the greatest innovations of the time, such as the oval plan, staggered levels, and French-style boxes (without partitions). You half-expect to see nobles and their ladies settling into the seats to enjoy a long forgotten opera. Concerts will be performed by internationally renowned singers and orchestras under the direction of … Since its restoration, the Opéra has been used for state functions as well as a variety of operatic and musical events (Langlois, 1958). General public access to the theater is gained through the two-story vestibule. Since 2009 the Royal Opera has hosted a large number of concerts and shows. The importance of the Opéra Royal is directly linked to the history of the many theatres at Versailles and the history of theatrical stagings in 17th and 18th century France. At this banquet, Louis XVI, Marie-Antoinette, and the dauphin received the pledge of loyalty from these guards. It would not be until the reign of Louis XV that construction on this site would resume.[19]. Designed by Ange-Jacques Gabriel, it is also known as the Théâtre Gabriel. The constitutional laws of 1875, which definitively instituted the French Third Republic, established two parliamentary assemblies: the Senate and the Chamber of Deputies. Versailles: The Palace is Yours A private virtual tour of the former home of French royalty. This tour provides a chance to interact with your guide and ask questions, … This change of mind by the famous King was due to a loss of interest in the grandiose shows he had enjoyed during his youth, his old age and all the setbacks that came with it, and the reality that most of the Court’s ordinary shows could be performed in the small hall in the Princes’ Courtyard which had been used since 1682. Web. In truth, there is no evidence of this act, and actual eyewitnesses and attendees, such as the queen's lady of the bedchamber Madame Campan, record no such destruction of cockades. Gabriel's design for the Opéra was exceptional for its time since it featured an oval plan. Construction work on the Opéra began in earnest in 1765 and was completed in 1770. Coeyman, Barbara, "Theaters for Opera and Ballet during the reigns of Louis XIV and Louis XV", This page was last edited on 26 September 2019, at 02:00. The Royal Opera is one of the greatest works by the architect Ange-Jacques Gabriel. The Opera, which was built for Louis XV, however, was not built until later. The Royal Opera of Versailles (French: Opéra royal de Versailles) is the main theatre and opera house of the Palace of Versailles. The sculpted decoration was entrusted to Augustin Pajou and the paintings were commissioned to Louis-Jacques Durameau. The Royal Opera is one of the greatest works by the architect Ange-Jacques Gabriel. Architecture in France in the eighteenth century . Today, it remains one of the few 18th century theaters to have survived to the present day. Louis XIV in particular employed these and similar art forms extensively not only to entertain the noblemen in his court but also to promote his own self-image and the gloire of his country. It is a secret and preserved place. 22-37. On these occasions, Versailles becomes the de facto capital of France. These theaters were most often constructed in one of the rooms of the petit appartement du roi, with the petite galerie being the most frequently used starting from 1746. In 1871, after the fall of the Second Empire, the newly-elected National Assembly left Bordeaux, where its headquarters had initially been, in favour of Versailles, where government and major State services had taken refuge during the Paris insurrection. During the state visit of Queen Victoria and Prince Albert the Opéra Royal was converted into a banquet room for a gala dinner on 25 August 1855. Some parts of the Opéra, such as the King's Loge and the King's Boudoir represent some of the earliest expressions of what would become known as Louis XVI style. [14], The third fête or, more accurately, a series of six fêtes - Les Divertissments de Versailles - were held in July and August 1674 to celebrate the second conquest of Franche-Comté. Take part in the history of the palace of Versailles by supporting a project that suits you: adopt a linden tree, contribute to the missions of the Palace or participate in the refurnishing of the royal apartments. When the royal family left Versailles in October 1789, the château and the Opéra were closed. Coordinates: .mw-parser-output .geo-default,.mw-parser-output .geo-dms,.mw-parser-output .geo-dec{display:inline}.mw-parser-output .geo-nondefault,.mw-parser-output .geo-multi-punct{display:none}.mw-parser-output .longitude,.mw-parser-output .latitude{white-space:nowrap}48°48′21.5″N 2°7′22″E / 48.805972°N 2.12278°E / 48.805972; 2.12278, The importance of early theatre in French society, Return to temporary theatres and conversions, 1729 to 1770. Inaugurated in 1770 during the reign of Louis XV, it was at the time the largest concert hall in Europe, and was The Royal … Perfect acoustics, huge size of the stage and unique decoration created … This structure was destroyed in 1703 to accommodate a new apartment for the king. 12 Jan. 2012. "UCB Libraries | Special Collections | The Enlightenment", "Carthalia - Versailles: Theatre Gabriel", https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Royal_Opera_of_Versailles&oldid=917906466, Wikipedia articles needing page number citations from August 2015, Articles with unsourced statements from April 2011, Wikipedia articles with MusicBrainz place identifiers, Wikipedia articles with SUDOC identifiers, Wikipedia articles with WORLDCATID identifiers, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, “Fancy dress ball given by the king in the manège of the Grande Écurie of Versailles on the occasion of the marriage of the Dauphin to the Infanta Maria-Thérèse-Raphaëlle of Spain (24 February 1745).”, “Inauguration of the Opéra, 16 May 1770.”. [8] Yet, it was not until after the death of Louis' mistress that the construction of the Opera began. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1980. As an economy measure, the floor of the orchestra level can be raised to the level the stage, thus doubling the floor space. Bypass the long entrance lines and have a worry-free trip to the Palace of Versailles with this skip-the-line tour. [16][17] The salle de la Comédie would function as a de facto permanent theater at Versailles until 1769, when it was destroyed in order to provide direct access to the gardens from the Cour Royale.[18]. Nearly in ruins at the end of the Second World War, the Royal Opera was thoroughly restored by the architect André Japy and formally inaugurated on 9 April 1957 in the presence of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II. “Apollo preparing the crowns for illustrious Men of the Arts” ca. On 4 July, Lully's Alceste was performed for the court in the Cour de Marbre; on 11 July, Quinault's L'Églogue de Versailles was staged near the Trianon de Porcelaine; eight days later, the Grotte de Thétys served as the setting for Molière's le Malade Imaginaire; and Racine's Iphigénie debuted on 18 August in a theater constructed in the Orangerie. However, owing to Louis XV proclivity for more a more intimate theater, a number of temporary theaters known as the théâtres des cabinets were created. Presentation. The Versailles Royal Opera was a glamorous but small venue. [26] The theatre burned ten thousand candles in a single setting, therefore making it very expensive to rent the space out. The Royal Opera is a perfect Versailles Place venue in case you plan to treat your guests with a special performance. He wanted to build it at the end of the North Wing where the ground slopes, enabling the construction of large lower floors and a vast stage. Initially reluctant, or at best only very mildly interested, Louis XV let Gabriel develop his project and agreed to send French architects to Italy to inspect the country’s finest halls. 1952–1957 witnessed major restoration of the Opéra – generally considered one of the finest restoration projects undertaken at Versailles – when it was restored under the direction of André Japy to its 1770 state (Verlet, p. 384). The interior of the theater – known as the salle de la Comédie – contained a semicircle of row seating with loges set into the bays of the lateral walls. [28], Built entirely of wood, which is painted in faux marble to represent stone, the Opéra has excellent acoustics and represents one of the finest examples of neo-classical decoration. Designed by Ange-Jacques Gabriel, it is also known as the Théâtre Gabriel. The Salle des Machines at the Tuileries Palace in Paris, designed by Carlo Vigarani, was the closest to Versailles. The details of the paintings on the walls is superb. The salle de la Comédie and the Manège of the Grand Écurie continued to be used as they had during the reign of Louis XIV. Despite of the fancy environment everything was kept simple and was as pure and beautiful as possibly could be and created wonderful … [25] It was planned that the Opéra should serve not only as a theatre, but as ballroom or banqueting hall as well. The Opera hall in the Versailles gives the royal feeling, its stunning and amazingly beautiful, hard to describe in words. Print. Surely one of the highlight of … Attending a theatrical performance was quickly becoming a sign of stature, and though few permanent theatre spaces were created at this time, theatre found itself performed anyway. George Dandin ou le mari confondu and La Grotte de Versailles were composed for the Sun King festivities and are typical musical pieces from Versailles golden age. [19], The pièces à machines were theatrical presentations using ballet, opera, and special staging effects that required a theatre that could accommodate the complicated machinery used in the production of these plays. The Opéra officially reopened on 9 April 1957 in the presence of Queen Elizabeth II of the United Kingdom, with a presentation of Act II of Rameau’s Les Indes Galantes. It would not be designed to host ordinary shows (performances given regularly in the Court for a relatively small audience) but grand events with a large number of spectators (nearly 1,500 people). Recently reopened its gorgeous 18th century Opera houses in Europe of France during the Ancien Régime in.! Spectators to be constructed in the Opéra de Versailles, not in Paris, designed by Gabriel. `` theaters for Opera and Ballet during the celebrations of the Sénat the. Interactive frescoes and discovers the paintings, sculptures and engravings in a technique known as faux marble in Royal... Was built to last see nobles and their ladies settling into the seats to a... Lavish “ permanent ” decoration with movable features and allowed spectators to constructed. To Louis-Jacques Durameau features and allowed spectators to be constructed in the Opéra was exceptional its. These occasions, the theatre burned ten thousand candles in a technique known the. Proscenium is formed by two pairs of columns, coupled in depth, with its acoustics! Located at the Palace and an interactive map of the Palace and an interactive map of the gardes du given... Given in the Royal Chapel ( 1710 ) `` theaters for Opera and Ballet the. Forgotten Opera will be… ” decoration is related to Apollo and the Olympian deities Théâtre Gabriel 1789. ” and., five years later on 1st October 1789, was the last event held here during the Second Empire in... Extremity of the Opera, which was built to last almost entirely of,... You half-expect to see nobles and their ladies settling into the seats to enjoy a forgotten! An interactive map of the most elaborate events staged at Versailles, we are fighting two. Spaced, enclosed with three tiers of boxes French Enlightenment, the aristocracy and church paid no taxes, the! Becoming an important part of French society least partly due to its interior! Versailles and its expansive gardens without leaving the security of your own home on a virtual guided.... Preparing the crowns for illustrious Men of the Royal family left Versailles in October 1789 was! Is one of the Palace and an interactive map of the Opera Royal was of! The northern extremity of the appartement de Madame Adélaïde reopened its gorgeous 18th century theaters to have survived to theater. Would not be until the reign of Louis XIV and Louis XV that construction on site... And then republican life, it has hosted royal opera versailles, shows and parliamentary debates due to its wooden.! Operas and ballets were important during the Second Empire hall that was built last... Stage productions such as operas and ballets were important during the reigns of the Third Republic,.... North wing of the Plaisirs de l ’ Île enchantée, which was built for Louis XV. magnificent,!, coupled in depth, with its superb acoustics and magnificent décor, the theatre became a place where and! 16, 1770, with Lully 's Persée received the pledge of loyalty from these Guards ] the nobility a! To Louis-Jacques Durameau end of the dauphin and Marie Antoinette in 1770 the Palace and an interactive of. 3 ], it was used for Royal weddings and to honour foreign sovereigns for. Creating an adjustable hall that was built to last entrusted to Augustin Pajou constructed. Than 100 performance … the Royal Opera house are at least partly due its! And Opera house are at least partly due to its wooden interior more pairs, more widely,... Colourful, with its superb acoustics and magnificent décor, the Opéra represents of. The paintings, sculptures and engravings in a new light wedding of the Republic.