The toughest opera season in the world

We have just received the new brochure from La Monnaie in Brussels.



It’s not a lot of laughs.

Director Peter de Caluwé writes: ‘When we reflect on our mission, we don’t only think about our artistic vision but also, and above all, our higher purpose.’

Apart from Cav&Pag there is not a single obvious crowd-pleaser in the season. No Verdi or Puccini. No bel canto. No Mozart/DaPonte. No Carmen.

Just very serious stuff:

Boesmans, Pinocchio

Rossini, Tancredi

Mozart, Lucio Silla

Poulenc, Dialogues des Carmelites

Dallapiccola, Il Prigioniero – with Rihm, Das Gehege

Wagner, Lohengrin

Bartok, Bluebeard’s Castle/Miraculous Mandarin

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  • Yep, the reign of this guy will go down in the Monnaie’s history as the worst ever….no originality, politically correct programming….When I hear the word “mission” vis a vis opera I have to vomit.
    The guy tried to get several times a post elsewhere that’s why he’s stuck in Brussels with a board of directors made up of poltically assigned profiteurs with no backbone.
    Moreover there’s a lot of grudging among his personnel as well.
    Though I live in Brussels I never go to the Monnaie anymore.
    And while i LOVE cav and pag there are other works more worthwhile hearing.
    Subscriptions went down and will go down further.
    No one I know has a positive word about this boss, no wonder no one else wants him. Poor Brussels indeed

    • So do I – maybe it’s a luxury for those of us who want to see some rarities, but The Carmelites, Lohengrin and Bluebeard’s Castle are total masterpieces anyway.

  • Oh c’mon, looks interesting enough, true; I’d go. But a super-subsidised continental house presenting a season of Dead White Males and a couple of tame Establishment modernists? Just take a look at what Welsh National Opera’s been doing in recent seasons, with no safety net. That’s risk-taking.

  • Looks exciting to me with Lohengrin, Tancredi, and Carmelites not to mention Bartok double bill and the Cav & Pag. I wish I was presented such delights here in Oslo.

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