The Festival in a few dates

1940’s

1948
1st edition of the Festival at the initiative of Gabriel Dussurget.
On the programme, Mozart's Così fan tutte.

1949
Construction of the Cassandre theatre in the courtyard of the Archevêché, replacing Georges Wakhévitch's temporary installation.

 


1950’s

1954
Gounod's Mireille is performed in the Val d'Enfer located in the commune of Baux-de-Provence.


1960’s

1960
to mark the opening of the Festival to the 20th-century French repertoire, Poulenc's La Voix humaine is performed, coupled with Darius Milhaud's Les Malheurs d’Orphée.

1962
Gabriel Dussurget is appointed artistic director of the Opéra de Paris.

1966
Debussy's Pelléas et Mélisande is performed at the Théâtre de l’Archevêché, a brave choice for the Festival to produce this work wreathed in Nordic mist.


1970’s

1972
the end of the Dussurget era.

1974
construction of a new theatre and the start of the Bernard Lefort era, focused on bel canto.

1975
concert with Ella Fitzgerald in the Place des Cardeurs.

1979
Massenet's Werther


1980’s

1980
Rossini's Sémiramis with Montserrat Caballé and Marilyn Horne.

1981
the departure of Bernard Lefort.

1982
the arrival of Louis Erlo at the head of the Festival and creation of Rameau's Les Boréades, an opera never played during the composer's lifetime.

1985
a new, moveable theatre, both wider and deeper, is built in the courtyard of the Archevêché. 


1990’s

1991
Britten's A Midsummer Night's Dream directed by Robert Carsen.

1996
departure of Louis Erlo.

1997
the Festival undergoes a serious financial crisis.

1998 
arrival of Stéphane Lissner at the head of the Festival. Its finances are put on a solid footing.
Creation of the Académie européenne de musique set up to train young performers.


From 2000

2007
inauguration of the Grand Théâtre de Provence with Wagner's Die Walküre played by the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra, in residence. 

Arrival of Bernard Foccroulle at the head of the Festival.

2007
Claudio Monteverdi's Orfeo, directed by Trisha Brown.

2009
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart's The Magic Flute, directed by William Kentridge.

2010
start of the four-year residency of the London Symphony Orchestra.

2010
Igor Stravinsky's The Nightingale and Other Tales, directed by Robert Lepage

2011
Giuseppe Verdi's La Traviata, directed by Jean-François Sivadier with Natalie Dessay in the title role.

2012
creation of George Benjamin's Written on Skin at the Grand Théâtre de Provence, directed by Katie Mitchell.

2013
Strauss's Elektra, the latest staging of the opera by Patrice Chéreau.

2014
The Magic Flute, directed by Simon McBurney at the Grand Théâtre de Provence and start of the residency of the Freibuger Barockorchester.

2015
The Monster in the Maze, the first opera for all by Jonathan Dove, directed by Marie-Eve Signeyrole.

2017
Pinocchio, world premiere by Philippe Boesmans staged by Joël Pommerat
Carmen by Bizet staged by Dmitri Tcherniakov