Idomeneo, re di Creta

Idomeneo, re di Creta

Dramma per musica by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
From CHF 17.-
Wed 21 Feb19:30
Fri 23 Feb19:30
Sun 25 Feb15:00
Tue 27 Feb19:00
Thu 29 Feb19:30
Sat 2 Mar19:30
Already lost in the high seas of grief,
The wave of your existence breaks; forgive
The timid song, the most forsaken love
That scatters from the fool’s hushed lips.

Walter Benjamin, Sonnet VI

Infos & Cast


Infos & Cast

Dramma per musica by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Libretto by Giambattista Varesco
First performed on 29 January 1781 in Munich
Last performed at the Grand Théâtre de Genève in 2003-2004

New production in co-production with Dutch National Opera Amsterdam and Théâtres de la ville de Luxembourg

21, 23, 29 February & 2 March 2024 — 7:30PM
25 February 2024 — 3PM
27 February 2024 — 7PM

On sale on Tuesday 7 November 2023

Musical Director Leonardo García Alarcón
Stage Director / Choreographer Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui
Set Designer Chiharu Shiota
Costumes Designer Yuima Nakazato
Lighting Designer Michael Bauer
Dramaturgy Simon Hatab
Choir Director Mark Biggins

Idomeneo, King of Crete Stanislas de Barbeyrac
Idamante, his son Lea Desandre
Elettra, daughter of Agamemnon Federica Lombardi
Ilia, Trojan princess, daughter of Priam Giulia Semenzato
Arbace, confidant of the king Omar Mancini
High Priest of Neptune Luca Bernard
Oracle William Meinert

Grand Théâtre de Genève Chorus
Orchestra composed of Cappella Mediterranea and L’Orchestre de Chambre de Genève
With dancers from the Ballet du Grand Théâtre and Eastman

Sponsored by

Main sponsor

Partner of contemporary art at the opera

Partner of the Ballet du Grand Théâtre

Patron for the Cappella Mediterranea


Beginning in 2019 with Rameau’s Les Indes galantes, followed by Lully’s Atys in 2022, the Grand Théâtre de Genève’s cruise through the rarely sailed waters of opera-ballet under the baton of Leonardo García Alarcón continues with this new production whose captain is none other than the director of the Geneva Ballet, Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui. And to keep lining up the maritime metaphors, he will be steering his course towards Idomeneo, written for the court of the Elector of Bavaria by a young man of 25, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart. An opera built, so to speak, around a terrible storm at sea, the result of the struggle between the god of the oceans Neptune, who favours the king of Crete Idomeneo on his return from the Trojan War, and Fate, who opposes him.

Fate, or as it is otherwise known in other parts, notably in the cultural waters of East Asia where Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui likes to cast his nets, karma. One of the terms used for karma, 箵 in Chinese yuan and in Japanese en, contains the silk thread radical 糸 and can also mean the border or hem of a garment. Thread and its avatars – ropes, cables, laces and tethers – are the trademark of Japanese visual artist Chiharu Shiota, who will design the sets for this production. The threads she uses are red ones, a red thread being a powerful karmic talisman in Japan and East Asia. With these threads, she weaves performances, body art and installations in a protean process exploring temporality, movement, memory and dreams, that demand mental and physical involvement from the viewer.

Chiharu Shiota and Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui will muster the forces of the Geneva Ballet, joined by Cherkaoui’s Eastman company along with soloists, to activate a monumental set where the red threads will form a palace, a raging ocean, a garden or a sea monster in continuous movement. Three stories are intertwined: a love triangle between Idomeneo’s son, Idamante, the Trojan princess Ilia and the princess of Argos, Elettra; the duel between a father traumatised by the Trojan war, and his son who seeks appeasement and reconciliation; and finally, as mentioned, the confrontation between the gods and human destiny. With Stanislas de Barbeyrac in the title role, Lea Desandre as his son Idamante, Federica Lombardi as Elettra and Giulia Semenzato as Ilia, the Grand Théâtre brings together a quartet of high-flying soloists who, under the direction of Leonardo García Alarcón, will make for a stellar performance, accompanied by García Alarcón’s own Cappella Mediterranea, whose ranks will be augmented for the occasion by the musicians of the Orchestre de Chambre de Genève.




Idomeneo at La Plage

Apéropéra 8.2.24
Cinéopéra 10.2.24
Éclairage 13.2.24
Public Workshop 17.2.24
Brunch 18.2.24
En coulisse 25.2.24
Intropéra 45 minutes before each performance


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