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Nuits Lyriques de Marmande

OUVERTURE

TOSCA

Saturday 24 August – 8.30 pm
Comoedia Theatre – Marmande

Music by Giacomo PUCCINI
Booklet by Luigi ILLICA and Giuseppe GIACOSA,
based on the play by Victorien SARDOU

Music Director: Philippe MESTRES
Director: Eric MARTIN-BONNET
Choirs of the Lyrical Nights: Marie-Claire MESTRES
ORCHESTRA OF SYMPHONISTS OF AQUITAINE
Pianist : Jean-Marc FONTANA

Floria Tosca : Sandra LIZ-CARTAGENA, Lauréate Concours 2004

Mario Cavaradossi : Christophe BERRY

Scarpia : Julien VERONESE, Lauréat Concours 2008

Angelotti : Florent LEROUX-ROCHE, Lauréat Concours 2018

Spoletta et un Geôlier : Christophe BELLIVEAU

Le Sacristain : Eric MARTN-BONNET, Lauréat Concours 1993

C’est en pleine bataille de Marengo que l’action se déroule. Les armées Françaises après une première déroute reprennent l’avantage et le Général Bonaparte l’emporte. Cette bourrasque révolutionnaire bouscule l’Europe au nom de la Liberté et l’Égalité…
 

À Rome en 1800, le peintre Mario Cavaradossi vient en aide à un prisonnier politique en fuite, Angelotti, ancien consul de la République, activement recherché par Scarpia, le redoutable chef de la police qui traque tous les partisans de la liberté. Le geste généreux de Cavaradossi va avoir de terribles conséquences. Scarpia, faux dévot sans scrupule, convoite depuis longtemps la maîtresse du peintre, la belle cantatrice Floria Tosca. Quoi de plus facile pour cet habile manipulateur que d’utiliser la jalousie de l’ombrageuse Tosca pour reprendre Angelotti, perdre Cavaradossi et posséder enfin sa maîtresse ? Tosca sera le jouet des désirs et de la cruauté de l’implacable Scarpia jusqu’à l’instant où elle aura

le courage de le poignarder pour se soustraire à un odieux marchandage. Quand Tosca croit pouvoir s’échapper avec Mario de cet univers de terreur, la mort les rattrape de la manière la plus cruelle.
 

Une diva, héroïne d’opéra ? Voici la belle et sanguine Tosca, rôle le plus saisissant né de la plume de Puccini, qui s’inspire d’un personnage créé au théâtre par la grande Sarah Bernhardt. Avec Rome en toile de fond, l’opéra tisse une histoire d’amour et de politique des plus réalistes, sur laquelle plane, dès le lever de rideau, la figure du terrifiant chef de police Scarpia, dont le poison contamine peu à peu cet oppressant huis clos.
Tosca, ce sont deux heures d’action et de passion coulées dans un lyrisme torrentiel et une orchestration luxueuse, sur un livret qui a l’efficacité d’un scénario de cinéma. Art, amour, religion, sadisme, complots… Tous les ingrédients du parfait mélodrame s’entremêlent et résonnent avec une force et une modernité intactes.

Floria Tosca : Sandra LIZ-CARTAGENA, Lauréate Concours 2004

Mario Cavaradossi : Christophe BERRY

Scarpia : Julien VERONESE, Lauréat Concours 2008

Angelotti : Florent LEROUX-ROCHE, Lauréat Concours 2018

Spoletta et un Geôlier : Christophe BELLIVEAU

Le Sacristain : Eric MARTN-BONNET, Lauréat Concours 1993

It is in the middle of the battle of Marengo that the action takes place. The French armies after a first rout regained the advantage and General Bonaparte won. This revolutionary gust is shaking up Europe in the name of Freedom and Equality…

In Rome in 1800, the painter Mario Cavaradossi helped a fugitive political prisoner, Angelotti, a former consul of the Republic, who was actively sought by Scarpia, the formidable police chief who hunted down all those who supported freedom. Cavaradossi’s generous gesture will have terrible consequences. Scarpia, a false unscrupulous devotee, has long coveted the painter’s mistress, the beautiful singer Floria Tosca. What could be easier for this skillful manipulator than to use the jealousy of the Tosca shade woman to take over Angelotti, lose Cavaradossi and finally possess his mistress? Tosca will be the toy of the desires and cruelty of the implacable Scarpia until the moment she has
the courage to stab him to avoid a heinous bargain. When Tosca thinks she and Mario can escape from this world of terror, death catches up with them in the most cruel way.

A diva, opera heroine? Here is the beautiful and sanguine Tosca, the most striking role born from Puccini’s pen, inspired by a character created in the theatre by the great Sarah Bernhardt. Against the backdrop of Rome, the opera weaves a most realistic story of love and politics, with the terrifying Chief of Police Scarpia hovering over it as soon as the curtain rises, whose poison is gradually contaminating this oppressive in camera environment.
Tosca is two hours of action and passion set in a torrential lyricism and luxurious orchestration, on a libretto that has the effectiveness of a film script. Art, love, religion, sadism, plots… All the ingredients of perfect melodrama are intertwined and resonate with intact strength and modernity.

Three Questions to Eric Martin-Bonnet, Director of Tosca

You were a winner of the Concours International de Chant de Marmande in 1993, can you explain to us how this helped you in your early career ?
The jury for the competition was made up of many theatre directors, so I left not only with my prizes (opera, voice operetta, melody and audience prize) but also with either commitments that were offered to me by some directors at the end of the competition or with promises of future commitments.

After a career during which you have sung on the greatest international stages, you decide to add to your artistic proposal the one of directing, can you tell us why this orientation and why in Marmande ?
From the beginning of my singing career, the game and the meaning of the booklets were important to me; just singing didn’t interest me because there was the text, the plot that allowed me to play the character.

I had the chance to work with many theatre directors such as Götz Friedrich, Antoine Bourseiller, Eric Genovèse, Denis Podalydès, Philippe Sireuil, Frédéric Bélier-Garcia, to name but a few, and each time under their direction, I felt happy because the character was right. I didn’t even have to “look for” colours to sing, the character existed, my voice was just his. These demanding theatre men led me into their world… simply to be and not to play a character… Les Nuits Lyriques de Marmande were the first to offer me a staging; I, who came here at the beginning of the Competition, was the opportunity to transmit this passion for the stage to young singers and to take the plunge.

You have agreed to direct Puccini’s “Tosca” as part of the 2019 Lyrical Nights, can you tell us more about this production and, in particular, the digital technology you have chosen to integrate into your work ?
Tosca… it’s not the easiest book to stage because Puccini described the places precisely, it requires a lot of money to reproduce them faithfully and it has already been done magnificently on the biggest international stages… so I thought to myself: For these young singers from the competition to feel comfortable, it was necessary to remove the wigs, the Empire costumes and project them into an era not so far from ours, the 1950s; after all, even if the Battle of Marengo did not take place in 1950, (Puccini forgives me…), the political intrigues, the power games and the love passion that Tosca feels are still relevant!
Digital technology allows us to move simply and quickly from one place to another, to travel freely without the heavy scenery that clutters the stage, and whose changes lead to endless intermissions… With digital technology, we can create images, atmospheres that would not be possible on Marmande’s stage.