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December 2022

La Bohème for today

This season the Nice Opera company aims to pull in a wider audience. It is bringing its act up to date with contemporary st age directors, hip-hop, after-work events, cabaret evenings and escape games.

Un vent de modernité souffle cette saison sur La Bohème. Photo de l'affiche réalisée par Arié Botbol.
Soirée hip-a à l'opéra avec Sofiane Pamart en 2021.
Photo de l'affiche du spectacle Falstaff, en mars-avril prochain. 

The Nice Opera house, with its baroque and neo-classical façades and Italian-style auditorium, is redolent of a romantic past. But “Opera is not an art frozen in time,” says Bertrand Rossi, its director. “I am convinced that we can banish the idea that opera means voluminous wigs and kitsch stage sets.” The posters for the season, by photographer Arié Botbol, reflect this mindset. Rather than representing scenes from operas, they aim to update the institution’s image. This season opened with a festival called  Metal’Up The Opera, with the Nice-based troupe Heart Attack. Also on the programme this season is a Hip-Hop The Opéra night on 5 April 2023, in partnership with Panda Events and Université Côte d’Azur. “I call in daring producers who bring opera up to date,” says Bertrand Rossi. The after-work events are held at Diacosmie, where the stage sets are built, and there are Sunday matinees for children under the heading “Bring your cuddly”. And there are dinners with the dancers of Ballet Nice Méditerranée, the musicians of the Orchestre Philharmonique and the Opera choir. Great ways to make a historic edifice relevant to today.

By Tanja Stojanov


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