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Opera

DAVEL

Christian Favre (1955)
Opera in two acts
Libretto by René Zahnd (1958), commissioned by the Opéra de Lausanne
Season 2022-23
Duration: 2h45
Incl. 1 intermission
15

In search of a Vaudois hero, between myth and history

“Here Davel gave his life for his country. 24 April 1723. These are the words that the walker can read on the monument erected in Vidy in memory of the famous major, on the very spot where the Bernese gallows where he was beheaded stood. What remains today of this martyred figure who became a legend in 1803 with the independence of Vaud and was subsequently elevated to the rank of icon halfway between history and folklore by countless publications and events? Three hundred and fifty years after his birth in Morrens, the Opéra de Lausanne asked two artists from the canton of Vaud to capture this charismatic figure and to make him resonate in words and notes for today’s audience. After three years of work, they are ready to reveal the doubts and certainties of his struggle, together with the key characters of his tragedy: the Bernese Ludwig von Wattenwyl, the high commander of the Pays de Vaud in charge of the investigation against him, friend and traitor Jean-Daniel de Crousaz, who denounced him to the Bernese authorities, and the Belle Inconnue, a fleeting, luminous incarnation of his mystical visions which are at the heart of the revelation of his destiny. An artistic and historical journey that the spectator is invited to extend through the reading of a book devoted to the genesis of the creation and the dramatic and musical evolution of the figure of Davel through the centuries.

Christian Favre
Composer
René Zahnd
Libretto
Gianni Schneider
Director
Daniel Kawka
Conductor
The Davel major
Régis Mengus
de Wattenwyl
François Lis
de Crousaz
Christophe Berry
The Beautiful Stranger
Alexandra Dobos-Rodriguez
The Mother
Susanne Gritschneder
Epilogue Lady / Lady of Cully
Anouk Molendijk
Lady of Cully
Elisabeth Montabone
Man of Cully
Mohamed Haidar
Maîtrise du Conservatoire de Lausanne directed by Pierre-Louis Nanchen
Conductor
Daniel Kawka
Director
Gianni Schneider
Playwright
Luc Birraux
Set Design
Nina Wetzel
Costumes
Mireille Dessingy
Videography
Sébastien Dupouey
Lighting
Laurent Junod
Director's Assistant
Jean-Philippe Guilois
Set Design Assistant
Florence Emery

The Opéra de Lausanne thanks the Musée cantonal des Beaux-Arts de Lausanne for having authorized a video shooting on its premises.

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