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ANNA BOLENA Will Be Performed at Grand Theatre Geneve This Month


Performances will run 22 October - 11 November.

ANNA BOLENA Will Be Performed at Grand Theatre Geneve This Month

Anna Bolena will be performed at Grand Theatre Geneve beginning later this month. Performances will run 22 October - 11 November. Learn more about the production and purchase tickets at


Musical Director Stefano Montanari
Stage Director Mariame Clément
Scenography & costumes Julia Hansen
Lighting Designer Ulrik Gad
Dramaturgy Clara Pons
Choir director Alan Woodbridge


Anna Bolena Elsa Dreisig
Enrico VIII Alex Esposito
Riccardo Percy Edgardo Rocha
Giovanna Seymour Stéphanie d'Oustrac
Smeton Lena Belkina
Lord Rochefort Michael Mofidian
Sir Hervey Julien Henric

Anne Boleyn was one of the wives of Henry VIII, Henry Tudor, the man who inspired the myth of Bluebeard and the king who instigated the schism between the Anglican and Catholic churches. Accused by her husband of adultery and high treason, she was beheaded in 1536. She was the mother of Queen Elizabeth I. Stories of the Tudor dynasty are still the bread and butter of many biopics and series today.

But one might also ask what is the point of telling the same story over and over again? Far from "historical realism" or Hollywood psychoanalysis, the Mariame Clément/Julie Hansen duo makes us take a peep through the keyhole at a Tudor/Donizetti trilogy unlike any other and which we will pursue over the course of the next three seasons. Even before going into the sequels, there will be no throwback to the time of Anne Boleyn, nor to the political and religious wars that bloodied England for nearly a century, nor into the pre-romantic imagination that fed Donizetti and his contemporaries, and even less into a dramatic decoding à la Schiller! No, what expects us is a plunge into an abstract painting. Or even into a multitude of abstract paintings. And although fortunately for our ears and our attention, not everything is synchronised, times and perspectives will overlap.

Dramatic duets and trios, narrow triangles that narrow even further, follow one another in a Holbein blue palace setting where the walls rise up over Nature that seems to look in from the outside. More than an escape, it offers the characters the invisible kindness of time and, in a sudden flow of space, the labyrinth of time multiplies the recurring scenes, memories, parallels, dreams and fantasies. The palace's rooms become the antechambers of the gaze. Is it ours or Queen Elizabeth's, a ghostly prisoner of her own existence, or is this just the art of operatic storytelling?

Soprano Elsa Dreisig in the title role and mezzo Stéphanie d'Oustrac as her friend and rival Jane Seymour, two French opera stars who are trying their hand at Bel Canto for the first time, will lead us through what has become known as the 'trilogy' of the master of Bergamo, playing the main roles in Maria Stuarda and then Roberto Devereux in the upcoming seasons.

Bass-baritone Alex Esposito, himself from Bergamo, and the young tenor Edgardo Rocha, Prince Charming in our recent Cenerentola, will take on the roles of the tyrannical husband and the languid lover respectively. Stefano Montanari, whose Cenerentola was taken from us by the first COVID lockdown, will finally be at our side to conduct this immersive adventure in the Donizetti universe.

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