L’Histoire de Manon


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Aurélie Dupont’s farewell performance at the Palais Garnier

L’Histoire de Manon

The exceptional evening marked by the farewells of Aurélie Dupont as prima ballerina of the Paris Opera Ballet in Kenneth MacMillan’s powerful ballet L’Histoire de Manon, with ballet superstar Roberto Bolle as her Des Grieux, directed by Cédric Klapisch.

Since it was first published in 1731, L’Histoire du Chevalier Des Grieux et de Manon Lescaut has been the object of numerous adaptations for both stage and screen. In the 19th century, Daniel-François-Esprit Auber, Jules Massenet and Giacomo Puccini used Abbé Prévost’s novel as the theme for their respective operas. After 1912, cinema transposed the story of Manon and the Knight into films of varying degrees of melodramatic intensity.

In 1974, British choreographer Kenneth MacMillan in turn decided to focus on the two protagonists for an ambitious ballet that could translate the feelings and emotions of two souls abused by the accidents of life and their own personal weaknesses. In short, how a young girl on her way to a convent manages to elope with the young student with whom she has just fallen in love, only to leave him to escape destitution and finally allow herself to be persuaded by her brother Lescaut to yield to the advances of wealthy “protectors”. Accused of prostitution and deported to Louisiana, Manon is rescued by Des Grieux. Driven to murder by Manon’s jailer, he escapes with her into the marshes where the young girl ultimately succumbs. Although sincere, the love that Manon and Des Grieux share for each other cannot stand up to the vagaries of existence. As a result, neither is able to escape moral or social decline.

Rather than to reuse the score of Massenet’s opera, MacMillan entrusted Leighton Lucas with the task of arranging a series of extracts taken from a selection of the French composer’s operatic, symphonic and vocal scores… The end result was a huge success from its debut performance in London in 1974 onwards. Sixteen years later, L’Histoire de Manon entered the Paris Opera Ballet’s repertoire.

Bonus: Interview with Aurélie Dupont by Cédric Klapisch

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L’Histoire de Manon [DVD & Blu-ray]

Ballet in three acts after l’Abbé Prévost
« L’Histoire du Chevalier des Grieux et de Manon Lescaut »

Music : Jules Massenet (1842-1912)
Arranged by Martin Yates

Manon Lescaut : Aurélie Dupont
Le Chevalier des Grieux : Roberto Bolle
Lescaut : Stéphane Bullion
La maîtresse de Lescaut : Alice Renavand
Monsieur Guillot de Morfontaine : Benjamin Pech
Le Geôlier : Karl Paquette

Corps de Ballet de l’Opéra national de Paris
Choreography and stage direction : Kenneth MacMillan

Sets and costumes : Nicholas Georgiadis
Lighting design : John B. Read

Orchestre de l’Opéra national de Paris
Conductor : Martin Yates


HD recording : Palais Garnier | 05/2015
TV direction :
Cédric Klapisch
Release date : 21 October 2016
Distribution : Naxos Distribution

: BAC135
Barcode: 3760115301351
Running time : 136 min.
Film : 125 min.
Bonus : Interview with Aurélie Dupont by Cédric Klapisch (11 min.)
Booklet : FR/ENG/GER | 28 pages
Image : Color, 16/9, NTSC
Sound : PCM 2.0, Dolby Digital 5.1
Region code : 0

Reference : BAC435
Barcode : 3760115304354
Running time : 136 min.
Film : 125 min.
Bonus : Interview with Aurélie Dupont by Cédric Klapisch (11 min.)
Booklet : FR/ENG/GER | 28 pages
Image : Color, 16/9, Full HD
Sound : PCM 2.0, DTS HD Master audio 5.1
Region code : A, B, C

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