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Berlioz: The Trojans


Opera in staged version
  • Tuesday August 29th 2023
  • Royal Opera
  • 6pm | 5h10 with intermission
Accueil Berlioz: The Trojans 2023


  • Alice Coote Cassandre
  • Michael Spyres Aeneas
  • Paula Murrihy Didon
  • Lionel Lhote Chorèbe, Sentinel I
  • Adèle Charvet Ascagne
  • William Thomas Narbal, Priam
  • Ashley Riches Panthée
  • Beth Taylor Anna
  • Laurence Kilsby Iopas, Hylas
  • Rebecca Evans Hecuba
  • Alex Rosen Hector, Sentinel II
  • *Graham Neal Helenus
  • *Sam Evans A Soldier
  • *Monteverdi Choir soloists
  • Monteverdi Choir
  • Orchestre Révolutionnaire et Romantique
  • John Eliot Gardiner Conductor
  • Dinis Sousa Concert Director
  • Tess Gibbs Staging
  • Rick Fisher Lights


“Spectacular, magnificent and deeply moving”: The Trojans, Berlioz’s masterpiece.


At the age of fifty-five, after three decades of irrepressible music, successes and failures, Berlioz the alchemist completed his most ambitious project: The Trojans, an opera in five acts for four hours of wildly inventive music.


Berlioz created his own demiurgic version of Virgil’s Aeneid, resulting in a colossal work, with five acts, nine tableaux, a plethora of roles, a titanic orchestra and an omnipresent chorus. For a long time The Trojans was considered a kind of sacred and unplayable musical behemoth and was often divided into two distinct evenings (The Capture of Troy and The Trojans in Carthage), which illustrates the wild ambitions of the brilliant French composer. “I have spent half my life among these demigods; I tell myself that they knew me as much as I know them,” explained Berlioz after composing a piece that had been on his mind since childhood.

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By turns epic, poetic and intrepid, full of brio and carried by a keen sense of tragic grandeur, The Trojans forms a dazzling ensemble. We can only surrender to the pomp of its marches, its bellicose scenes, the prophetic curses of Cassandra and Dido and perhaps also the headiness of one of the most captivating love duets in the repertoire.


The great conductor and Berlioz enthusiast John Eliot Gardiner directs his Orchestre Révolutionnaire et Romantique and the Monteverdi Choir in this beloved piece, taking it to its zenith in the historic (1837) setting of the Opéra Royal, in the very footsteps of Berlioz. Let us throw open the bronze doors of history!


Concert performed in the “Marble palace enhanced with gold”, a setting designed by Ciceri in which Berlioz himself directed a concert at the Opéra Royal on Sunday 29 October 1848.


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First part: 1h30

Intermission: 40mn

Second part: 1h45

Intermission: 40mn

Third part: 50mn

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First part: The taking of Troy

Second part: The Trojans in Carthage


An opera in five acts to a libretto by Hector Berlioz, inspired by Virgil’s Aeneid, premièred in its entirety in Carlsruhe in 1890.

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The Royal Opera of the Château de Versailles

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