Opéra de Lausanne
A cultural institution located in the heart of Lausanne since 1871. It’s become an emblematic institution in French-speaking Switzerland, contributing to its cultural influence.
Since its renovation in 2012, the Opéra de Lausanne has equipped its stage with the most advanced technologies, and offers a diversified choice of operas, concerts and ballets each season, showcasing a repertoire that spans from the 17th to the 21st centuries, from Monteverdi to Levinas. This diversity, as well as the artistic and vocal level of its international singers, ensures a dynamism and recognition that confirms the Opéra de Lausanne’s renown, and is reinforced by the rebroadcasts and diffusion of its productions, which are often acclaimed.
The Opéra de Lausanne is also known for its annual programming of a true opera for young audiences. In addition to the discovery of the operatic world offered annually to more than 2,000 students, it has a proactive policy of professionally integrating young graduates of the HEMu and HEMGe. In 2010, the Opéra de Lausanne created the Lyric Road, a unique decentralisation operation that takes place in the summer in the French-speaking region and allows distant audiences to enjoy quality opera performances.
A Bit of History
In Lausanne, opera has long been a defining feature of the cultural scene, reflecting the desire of Lausanne’s citizens for theatre, and not just music.
Voltaire was already praising the curiosity of the Lausanne public and was delighted with the reception given to his theatrical works. In its new building, the modern Opéra de Lausanne, with the strength of its heritage, is dedicated to preserving the repertoire, as well as showcasing and commissioning works for a wide audience including its youngest fans.
world-class performances and productions that are at the same time renewed and respectful of the operas presented.
Co-productions with other major theatres have made it possible to create spectacular scenographic productions allowing maximal use of the modern technical equipment installed when the theatre was renovated in 2012. The recognition of these productions is reflected both in the returning attendance of the public each season and in the co-production of a number of recordings, television broadcasts, and live streaming whether with Arte Concert, Mezzo, or the RTS.
Just as much a part of its area of activity, the Opéra de Lausanne encourages the writing and publishing of works dealing with Lausanne’s musical history over the past centuries. The editorial focus is combined with a strategy of commissioning operas from contemporary composers, such as Michaël Levinas, in order to spark and capture the interest of the young public in the operatic art.
The Choir of the Opéra de Lausanne is a young choir, comprising both vocal students from the Hautes Ecoles de musique romandes, Hemu and HemGe, and professional singers.
The experience acquired at the Opéra de Lausanne often allows new graduates to pursue a career that at times brings them back to Lausanne. Its members are selected by audition and are periodically reheard. They are carefully chosen for each opera according to their voice and/or aptitudes, as well as their stage presence. With their contagious enthusiasm, they are highly appraised by invited Directors.
Members benefit from several years of training under the direction of a number of dynamic expert Choir Directors from different disciplines, who are selected according to the works performed and their specific qualities.
President, Foundation Council
The current season has been marked by “scandalously…lyric”. As I write this, I’ve just attended the last performance of “Doña Francisquita”, the zarzuela by Amadeo Vives. A scandal, that allowed us to attend such a brilliant work, so colourful, that was divinely sang and danced. Scandalously Spanish !
The whole season is in harmony ! Lausanne, let yourselves be tempted by the courage and diversity of Éric Vigié’s programming, which sometimes emerges with genius and measured risks from the ultra-classical repertoire.
It’s true that with the rapid pace of digitalization and a plethora of cultural offerings, it’s difficult for us to easily predict the ticket sales we used to enjoy before ; the scandalous days when subscriptions were sold out six months before the premiere are over ! Today, we need good coverage on the day after the premiere, which may or may not trigger hundreds of bookings in a matter of hours.
Our 2020-2021 season will be the 150th ! As chance would have it, our Theatre will be the epicenter, and the unique meeting place of the main City and County cultural institutions. Come and join us by the masses !
I would like to express my deepest gratitude to all the Opera’s collaborators for their important commitment to the quality of the performances presented. They deserve an applause by us all.
Let’s not forget our partners, the Ville de Lausanne, Canton de Vaud, our patrons and sponsors, who are often as discreet as they are generous. Thank you for your loyalty and important contribution to the impact of our Opéra de Lausanne. I look forward to meeting you all at Avenue du Théâtre !
Director, Opéra de Lausanne
For this new season our Theatre celebrates 150 years of existence.
Inaugurated on the 10th of May 1871 with a performance of The Barber of Seville, the Casino-Théâtre, then Théâtre de Lausanne, followed by Théâtre Municipal, and finally the Opéra de Lausanne (since 1984) has hosted hundreds of shows of all styles and genres throughout the decades.
By chance we will also be hosting the Théâtre Vidy-Lausanne, which is under renovation, and the Béjart Ballet Lausanne, which currently has no auditorium.
This unique combination will offer the Opera an exceptional season in terms of lyricism, choreography and theater, bringing together for the first time the four great cultural foundations of the Ville de Lausanne and Canton de Vaud : Lausanne Chamber Orchestra, Théâtre Vidy-Lausanne, Béjart Ballet Lausanne and the Opera de Lausanne all under one roof.
The very essence of this historic theatre, once multidisciplinary, will relive a grand season until December 2021.
I invite you to discover our program and hope to see as many of you as possible around our artistic offerings, so that your Theatre will be present and creative for the years to come.