4 Sep 2023
The Monteverdi Choir and the Orchestre Révolutionnaire et Romantique, alongside outstanding soloists, conducted by Dinis Sousa, have received critical acclaim and standing ovations for their European tour of Berlioz’s Les Troyens.
The ensembles performed at the Berlioz Festival on 22 and 23 August, Salzburg Festival on 26 August, Opéra Royal, Château de Versailles, on 29 August, the Berlin Festival on 1 September, and at the BBC Proms on 3 September which was broadcast live on BBC Radio 3 and is available on BBC Sounds until 9 October.
Les Troyens is Berlioz’s most ambitious work, the summation of his entire artistic career. It begins with the capture of Troy by the Greeks, as foretold by Cassandre, and ends with the death of Dido, the queen of Carthage, after her unhappy love affair with the Trojan, Aeneas.
The Monteverdi Choir and the Orchestre Révolutionnaire et Romantique last performed Berlioz’s Les Troyens in 2003, on Berlioz’s bicentenary, at the Théâtre du Châtelet in Paris – the first time the opera had been performed in Paris in its entirety. Twenty years later we were delighted to be joined on our European tour by an outstanding cast including Alice Coote, Michael Spyres, Paula Murrihy, Lionel Lhote, Adèle Charvet, William Thomas, Ashley Riches, Beth Taylor, Laurence Kilsby, Rebecca Evans, Alex Rosen, Graham Neal and Sam Evans.
Please find quotes from reviews of the Monteverdi Choir & Orchestras’ (MCO) European tour below:
“Five stars for a white-hot Les Troyens at the BBC Proms” - ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐Financial Times
“The Proms are conquered by mighty Trojans ...it was sublime” - ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐The Daily Telegraph
“The glorious grand opera sounded gorgeous” - ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐Evening Standard
“Magisterial Berlioz at the Proms” - ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ The Times
“A spellbinding, well-paced performance” - ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ The Observer
“Dinis Sousa ...brought excitement and emotional intensity to Berlioz’s epic opera” – ⭐⭐⭐⭐The Guardian
“Ravishing interpretation of Berlioz’s masterpiece” - ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐The Arts Desk
“There were heroes at every turn, none more than Dinis Sousa” - ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐Bachtrack
“Dinis Sousa ...brilliantly conduct[s] Les Troyens à Carthage” - Olyrix
“Berlioz Festival: Les Troyens ...a triumphant tour” - Diapason
“The performers ...are all exceptional” - Classicagenda
“A complete success!” - Die Presse
“[Dinis Sousa] brought Gardiner’s interpretation to life together with his Orchestre Révolutionnaire et Romantique, the Monteverdi Choir and a first-class group of soloists ...And what was heard was a revelation” - Der Standard
“The event of the five-hour evening was, on the one hand, the fantastic Monteverdi Choir, which inspired the audience from the very first note with its overwhelming sound culture, homogeneity, flexibility, precision and impact. On the other hand, the Orchestre Révolutionnaire et Romantique - the sound of the old instruments is simply stunning”
– BR Klassik
The MCO will now turn its attention to their performances this autumn, including the Monteverdi Choir and English Baroque Soloists’ tour of North America and their concert at St Martin-in-the-Fields in London on 31 October. A conductor will be announced in due course following the news that John Eliot Gardiner has withdrawn from all engagements until next year to address personal issues.