Orphée et Eurydice – ‘J’ai perdu mon Eurydice’ (Juan Diego Flórez, The Royal Opera)

Royal Opera House Published on Sep 24, 2015
Juan Diego Flórez in The Royal Opera’s production of Gluck’s Orphée et Eurydice. Find out more at
The Italian Orfeo ed Euridice was the first of Gluck’s great ‘reform’ operas. In it, he and his librettist Ranieri de’ Calzabigi sought to move away from the complicated plots and ornate music of opera seria, in favour of a ‘noble simplicity’, where music always drives the story. The opera’s premiere at the Vienna Burgtheater on 5 October 1762 was a great success – so much so that Gluck himself revised the opera for the French premiere at the Paris Opéra on 2 August 1774 as Orphée et Eurydice. It is longer, larger and grander; Gluck extended movements, added new ones and revised the orchestration to suit the forces of the Opéra. He also recast the role of Orpheus from alto castrato to the haute-contre of French opera, a very high tenor. The opera remains Gluck’s most popular work, and a landmark in operatic history.

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