Libretto by Felice ROMANI

New production

  • Opéra Royal de Wallonie-Liège

Last performance at the Opéra Royal de Wallonie-Liège : November 2001 (concertante version)

Online, Thursday 19th of March , on France TV platform at 8PM

The story

In a Swiss village in the 19th century, Amina and Elvino are in love and are to be married. However, the young woman is found asleep in the bed of Count Rodolfo who is staying at an inn. She is accused of adultery, but fiercely defends her honour. Nevertheless, the furious Elvino breaks off their engagement…


Inspired by a vaudeville written by Eugène Scribe, Bellini collaborated with the era’s greatest librettist, Felice Romani, to create deeply endearing work in which the pastoral idyll and touching innocence of the heroine, Amina, are a pretext for making the most of the young composer’s boundless melodic style.

The work was first performed in Rome in 1831 and was a resounding success. Bellini conducted the orchestra, while the great Giuditta Pasta and famous Giovanni Rubini played the leading roles. Unlike madness, the sleep-walking, which was in vogue at the start of the 19th century, provided for a happy ending to the beauty’s misfortunes. The lyricism of the writing, the orchestral transparency and the voice-leadings make La Sonnambula one of the favourite works of bel canto, culminating in the sublime aria “Ah, non credea mirarti”, in which Amina sings of her sorrows in love. Indeed, it is these few words, “I had not thought I would see you, dear flowers, perished so soon” which are featured on the tomb of the author of Norma, whose premature death at the age of 34 years old, deprived operatic history of further masterpieces.


Conductor : Speranza SCAPPUCCI • Director : Jaco VAN DORMAEL • Choreography : Michèle Anne DE MEY • Set design : Vincent LEMAIRE • Costumes design : Fernand RUIZ • Lighting design : Nicolas OLIVIER • Video : Giacinto CAPONIO • Chorus master : Pierre IODICE

Amina : Nino MACHAIDZE • Elvino : René BARBERA • Il Conte Rodolfo : Marko MIMICA • Lisa : Shiri MAGAR • Teresa : Angélique NOLDUS • Alessio : Kamil BEN HSAÏN LACHIRI • A notary : Benoît DELVAUX

Danseurs :

Amina : Violette WANTY • Elvino (+ acrobatics) : Aurélien OUDOT • Il Conte Rodolfo (+ acrobatics) : Nino WASSMER • Lisa : Marie BOURJALA • Lisa (+ acrobatics) : Maya KESSELMAN • Teresa : Johanne SAUNIER • Teresa (+ funambulist and acrobatics) : Anke FIÉVEZ • Alessio (+ acrobatics) : Dominic CRUZ • Un notaire (+ acrobatics) : Michaël HOTTIER

Introduction to performances: curtain-raisers

All the opera performances are preceded by an educational introduction open to all. They take place 30 minutes before the start of the performance, in the company of an opera specialist to provide a pertinent presentation of the work.