Libretto by Temistocle SOLERA


  • Opéra Royal de Wallonie-Liège
  • Israeli Opera de Tel Aviv

Last performance at the Opéra Royal de Wallonie-Liège : October 2016

The story

Nabucco and the Babylonians are besieging Jerusalem. The Jews, reduced to slavery, hold the king’s daughter, Fenena, captive. She is in love with Ismaele, nephew to the King of Jerusalem. Abigaille, the illegitimate daughter of Nabucco, is her rival. When Nabucco is struck by lightning for having believed he was divine, Abigaille takes power, sentences her half-sister to death and torments the people…


Verdi’s genius resides in the outstanding dramatic tension that runs through his operas and the irresistible beauty of his melodies. At its heart, Nabucco, which recounts a famous biblical episode, encapsulates the claims for independence of an Italian people subjected for too long to foreign dominance. This was part of the recipe for the astounding success of a young composer who, in Milan in 1842, had just stepped into the limelight and who would go on to bring the house down for more than four decades.

Among the human passions expressed in the arias borne by sublime melodies, what stands out is the extraordinary vocal style of Abigaille, considered to be the “tomb of the sopranos”, backed up by a trenchant and powerful orchestra. Yet the work’s summit of expression lies in the deeply moving choir of the Jewish people held captive in Babylon, singing of the nostalgia for their country. From the very first performance, “Va pensiero”, a simple and pure melody, became the symbol for unity of the Italian people. Today, this second national anthem has crossed borders and expresses the pain of all oppression.

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.

Plan your visit

  • Surtitle

    The Opéra Royal de Wallonie-Liège offers to its spectators a surtitle in French, Dutch, German and English, for each opera on the bill.

  • Car Parks

    How to come by car?

    Car parks with discounted rate

    Discounted rate of € 6 for performances and concerts featured in our schedules (in the evening from 18.00 to 01.00 and on Sunday from 13.00 to 19.00). A validation terminal is available in the entrance hall of the Opera House (from when the doors opens).

    Neujean car park

    45, Boulevard de la Sauvenière – 4000 Liège, Belgium

    • Mon. to Fri. : open until 1 o’clock in the morning.
    • Sat. and Sun. : open all night.

    Opéra car park

    1, Galerie Opéra – 4000 Liège, Belgium
    Open 24 hours, 7 days a week

    Other car parks nearby

    • Central Park car park : 26, Place Xavier-Neujean - 4000 Liège
    • Saint-Lambert car park : Place Saint-Lambert - 4000 Liège
    • Cathédrale car park : Place de la Cathédrale - 4000 Liège

  • Catering

    For a meal or a drink during an opera or a concert

    Whether you want a drink or a meal (by booking only), the Opera Restaurant, located in the prestigious setting of the Foyer Grétry, welcomes you before each performance when the Theatre’s doors open.

    During the interval, the Foyer Grétry Bar (2nd floor) as well as the Salazar Bar (4th floor) are open for you to relax and quench your thirst.

    For “Opera for All” Young Audience performances and “Discovery concerts”, the Foyer Grétry Bar is open one hour before and at the end of each performance.

    For information and bookings: +32 (0) 499 42 42 62  - lydia-campoccia@hotmail.com – www.leschefsopera.be

    Drink tokens

    Drink tokens are on sale as soon as the doors of the Theatre open on performance days (in the entrance hall and the main stairs) or during the interval (in the Foyer Grétry).

    Simple token : 1, 40 € (softs : 2 tokens / wines : 3 tokens)

    Champagne token : 9 €

    For reasons of hygiene and cleanliness, it is forbidden to bring drinks and snacks into the building.


    February & March Menu