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Opera

Ma Mère l'Oye /​ L'Enfant et les Sortilèges

Maurice Ravel

Palais Garnier

from 21 November to 14 December 2023

1h45 with 1 interval

Ma Mère l'Oye /​ L'Enfant et les Sortilèges

Palais Garnier - from 21 November to 14 December 2023

Synopsis

Listen to the synopsis

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A teapot dancing the foxtrot with a Chinese cup, an armchair courting a Louis XV wing chair, objects and animals joining forces against an unruly child: such is the marvellous world that Maurice Ravel brings to life in his “fantaisie lyrique” created in 1925. A finely orchestrated musical gem, in which the composer’s taste for humour, childhood poetry and animals – an affection shared with the writer Colette, who wrote the libretto – is clearly apparent. While the artists of the Academy embody the characters of L’Enfant et les Sortilèges in Richard Jones’ oneiric staging, the students of the Ballet School perform the ballet Ma Mère l’Oye (1912) in Martin Chaix’ inventive choreography. An opera, a ballet: two works by Ravel placed under the sign of childhood and fairy tales, sublimated by the red and golden setting of the Palais Garnier...

Duration : 1h45 with 1 interval

Language : French / French

Surtitle : French / English

  • Opening

  • First part 30 min

  • Intermission 30 min

  • Second part 45 min

  • End

Show acts

Detail of acts

The Child, grounded by his mother, takes his anger out on everything around him: he breaks the teapot and the cup, hunts the squirrel, pulls the cat tail, puts out the fire in the fireplace, slashes the tapestry, damages the clock and throws the books away. But then the furniture comes to life and mocks him: the chair and armchair dance a minuet together, the fire sets the room ablaze, the princess gets out of her book then gives way for an old arithmetic teacher and a chorus of numbers and the cat start a duet with the female cat in the garden. The Child goes chasing after them. The room disappears. The Child is alone in the garden, under the moonlight. The trees let out a cry of pain caused by the wounds the Child inflicted on them. A dragonfly searches for its friend he pierced, the bats mourn their mother he killed, the squirrel warns the frog against a danger of imprisonment. They all unite against the Child who cries out: “Mummy!”. A squirrel gets injured in the fight. The Child heals its wound then falls, unconscious. The animals call out: “Mummy!” and bring the Child, now quiet, in his room.  

Artists

Ballet in one act, five scenes and a grand finale (1912)

After Charles Perrault, Madame Leprince de Beaumont, Madame d’Aulnoy

Creative team

Lyric fantasy in two parts (1925)

Creative team

Cast

With the participation of the Paris Opera Ballet School students
Artists in residence a the Paris Opera Académie
Paris Opera Orchestra
With the Maîtrise Notre-Dame de Paris, chœur d'adultes
Maîtrise des Hauts-de-Seine / Chœur d’enfants de l’Opéra national de Paris

With the exceptional support of Flavia et Barden Gale

Media

  • Draw-me Ma Mère l'Oye / L'Enfant et les Sortilèges

    Draw-me Ma Mère l'Oye / L'Enfant et les Sortilèges

    Watch the video

  • The innocence of childhood: Martin Chaix at the École de Danse

    The innocence of childhood: Martin Chaix at the École de Danse

    Watch the video

  • Behind the scenes of L'Enfant et les Sortilèges - Through the eyes of Dorothée de Monfreid

    Behind the scenes of L'Enfant et les Sortilèges - Through the eyes of Dorothée de Monfreid

    See the slideshow

Draw-me Ma Mère l'Oye / L'Enfant et les Sortilèges

Watch the video

Understand the plot in 1 minute

1:31 min

Draw-me Ma Mère l'Oye / L'Enfant et les Sortilèges

By Matthieu Pajot

© Julien Benhamou / OnP

The innocence of childhood: Martin Chaix at the École de Danse

Watch the video

5:08 min

The innocence of childhood: Martin Chaix at the École de Danse

By Antony Desvaux

On the occasion of the revival of Ma Mère l'Oye, a ballet created in April 2023 at the Palais Garnier by students from the Paris Opera Ballet School, choreographer Martin Chaix looks back at the genesis of the project.

He talks about the world of childhood and the way in which fairytales, which are part of our collective imagination, are still relevant today. He explains the feminist perspective he is developing through the female characters, as well as the use of paper and origami in the scenography.

Two 1st division students, Indira Sas who plays Sleeping Beauty, and Carlo Zarcone who plays Bluebeard, share their impressions about this first creative experience.

© Dorothée de Monfreid / OnP

See the slideshow

01 min

Behind the scenes of L'Enfant et les Sortilèges - Through the eyes of Dorothée de Monfreid

By Dorothée de Monfreid

Beginning with the work of the flou and tailleur workshops at the Opéra Bastille and ending with the dress rehearsal at the Palais Garnier, illustrator Dorothée de Monfreid followed the production of Maurice Ravel's L'Enfant et les Sortilèges directed by Antony McDonald and Richard Jones.

A look at the various stages in the run-up to performances: costume fittings and alterations, rehearsals with the soloists from the lyric troupe and the Academy, the Paris Opera Orchestra musicians and the singers of the Maîtrise Notre-Dame de Paris youth chorus, make-up and preparations before the very last rehearsal.

L'Enfant et les Sortilèges vu par Dorothée de Monfreid
L'Enfant et les Sortilèges vu par Dorothée de Monfreid 15 images

  • [EXTRAIT] MA MÈRE L'OYE de Maurice Ravel
  • [EXTRAIT] MA MÈRE L'OYE de Maurice Ravel
  • [EXTRAIT] MA MÈRE L'OYE de Maurice Ravel
  • [EXTRAIT] MA MÈRE L'OYE de Maurice Ravel
  • [EXTRAIT] L'ENFANT ET LES SORTILÈGES de Maurice Ravel
  • [EXTRAIT] L'ENFANT ET LES SORTILÈGES de Maurice Ravel
  • [EXTRAIT] L'ENFANT ET LES SORTILÈGES de Maurice Ravel
  • [EXTRAIT] L'ENFANT ET LES SORTILÈGES de Maurice Ravel
  • L'Enfant et les Sortilèges (saison 23/24) - Tobias Westman, Chœur

  • L'Enfant et les Sortilèges (saison 23/24) - Marine Chagnon

  • L'Enfant et les Sortilèges (saison 23/24) - Emy Gazeilles

  • L'Enfant et les Sortilèges (saison 23/24) - Marine Chagnon et Adrien Mathonnat

Access and services

Palais Garnier

Place de l'Opéra

75009 Paris

Public transport

Underground Opéra (lignes 3, 7 et 8), Chaussée d’Antin (lignes 7 et 9), Madeleine (lignes 8 et 14), Auber (RER A)

Bus 20, 21, 27, 29, 32, 45, 52, 66, 68, 95, N15, N16

Calculate my route
Car park

Q-Park Edouard VII16 16, rue Bruno Coquatrix 75009 Paris

Book your parking spot
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Imagined as benchmark, richly illustrated booklets, the programmes can be bought online, at the box offices, in our shops, and in the theatres hall on the evening of the performance.  

BUY
  • Cloakrooms

    Free cloakrooms are at your disposal. The comprehensive list of prohibited items is available here.

  • Bars

    Reservation of drinks and light refreshments for the intervals is possible online up to 24 hours prior to your visit, or at the bars before each performance.

  • Restaurant

    CoCo is open every day from 12:00 pm to 2:00 am. More information on coco-paris.com or at +33 1 42 68 86 80 (reservations).

  • Parking

    You can park your car at the Q-Park Edouard VII. It is located at Rue Bruno Coquatrix 75009 Paris (in front of 23 Rue de Caumartin).

    BOOK YOUR PARKING PLACE.

At the Palais Garnier, buy €10 tickets for seats in the 6th category (very limited visibility, two tickets maximum per person) on the day of the performance at the Box offices.

In both our venues, discounted tickets are sold at the box offices from 30 minutes before the show:

  • €35 tickets for under-28s, unemployed people (with documentary proof less than 3 months old) and senior citizens over 65 with non-taxable income (proof of tax exemption for the current year required)
  • €70 tickets for senior citizens over 65

Get samples of the operas and ballets at the Paris Opera gift shops: programmes, books, recordings, and also stationery, jewellery, shirts, homeware and honey from Paris Opera.

Palais Garnier
  • Every day from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. and until performances end
  • Get in from Place de l’Opéra or from within the theatre’s public areas
  • For more information: +33 1 53 43 03 97

Palais Garnier

Place de l'Opéra

75009 Paris

Public transport

Underground Opéra (lignes 3, 7 et 8), Chaussée d’Antin (lignes 7 et 9), Madeleine (lignes 8 et 14), Auber (RER A)

Bus 20, 21, 27, 29, 32, 45, 52, 66, 68, 95, N15, N16

Calculate my route
Car park

Q-Park Edouard VII16 16, rue Bruno Coquatrix 75009 Paris

Book your parking spot
super alt text
super alt text
super alt text
super alt text

Imagined as benchmark, richly illustrated booklets, the programmes can be bought online, at the box offices, in our shops, and in the theatres hall on the evening of the performance.  

BUY
  • Cloakrooms

    Free cloakrooms are at your disposal. The comprehensive list of prohibited items is available here.

  • Bars

    Reservation of drinks and light refreshments for the intervals is possible online up to 24 hours prior to your visit, or at the bars before each performance.

  • Restaurant

    CoCo is open every day from 12:00 pm to 2:00 am. More information on coco-paris.com or at +33 1 42 68 86 80 (reservations).

  • Parking

    You can park your car at the Q-Park Edouard VII. It is located at Rue Bruno Coquatrix 75009 Paris (in front of 23 Rue de Caumartin).

    BOOK YOUR PARKING PLACE.

At the Palais Garnier, buy €10 tickets for seats in the 6th category (very limited visibility, two tickets maximum per person) on the day of the performance at the Box offices.

In both our venues, discounted tickets are sold at the box offices from 30 minutes before the show:

  • €35 tickets for under-28s, unemployed people (with documentary proof less than 3 months old) and senior citizens over 65 with non-taxable income (proof of tax exemption for the current year required)
  • €70 tickets for senior citizens over 65

Get samples of the operas and ballets at the Paris Opera gift shops: programmes, books, recordings, and also stationery, jewellery, shirts, homeware and honey from Paris Opera.

Palais Garnier
  • Every day from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. and until performances end
  • Get in from Place de l’Opéra or from within the theatre’s public areas
  • For more information: +33 1 53 43 03 97

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Ma Mère l'Oye / L'Enfant et les Sortilèges

The Child and the Spells in 5 costumes

Do you remember how, as a child, shadows would start dancing on the walls as soon as the lights in your room went out? That’s exactly the kind of atmosphere you’ll find in Ravel’s Child and the Spells, a A Lyric Fantasy in two parts set to a libretto by Colette.

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