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Guide to Dutch National Opera and Ballet

« The magic of this performance was that although it was a totally site-specific conception, it managed to achieve such universality, transcending even Monteverdi’s original visions of the piece in a cathedral. It was an immersive and spiritual experience, and some of its visual and sonic images will surely remain with me for a long time. »
Nahoko Gotoh, January 2017
Dutch National Opera
Dutch National Opera
June 2019
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Evening performance
Matinee performance
Upcoming eventsSee more...

AmsterdamPelléas et MélisandeNew production

Paul Appleby (Pelléas) and Elena Tsallagova (Mélisande) © BAUS
Debussy: Pelléas et Mélisande
Stéphane Denève; Olivier Py; Dutch National Opera; Pierre-André Weitz; Paul Appleby; Elena Tsallagova

AmsterdamOpera in the Park: Pelléas et Mélisande, free

Debussy: Pelléas et Mélisande
Dutch National Opera

AmsterdamVan Manen / Forsythe / ArquésNew Production

Van Manen / Forsythe / Arqués
Whitley, Górecki, Willems
Juanjo Arqués; Hans van Manen; William Forsythe; Dutch National Ballet; Matthew Rowe; Keso Dekker; Tatyana van Walsum; Het Balletorkest

AmsterdamNew Moves

New Moves
New works
Dancers of Dutch National Ballet; Dutch National Ballet

AmsterdamPagliacci / Cavalleria rusticanaNew production

Pagliacci / Cavalleria rusticana
Leoncavallo, Mascagni
Sir Mark Elder; Robert Carsen; Dutch National Opera; Radu Boruzescu; Annemarie Woods; Ailyn Pérez; Brandon Jovanovich
Latest reviewsSee more...

Pelléas et Mélisande: austerely beautiful but flawed

Paul Appleby (Pelléas) and Elena Tsallagova (Mélisande) © BAUS
The credits for this new production directed by Olivier Py raised high expectations that were only partially met on opening night.
***11
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Airborne string players and choral wizardry in aus LICHT Part 3

aus LICHT Day 3 © Ruth & Martin Walz
In the final instalment of aus LICHT, the Helicopter String Quartet lives up to the publicity hype and choirs perform marvellous feats.
****1
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Hypnotic, diabolical and magical:

aus LICHT: Day 2 – KATHINKAs GESANG © Ruth & Martin Walz
The second day of aus LICHT is one mesmerising highlight after another, including the Netherlands Youth and Children’s Choirs in one magical and one sinister procession.
****1
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aus LICHT Part 1: Michael only takes flight in the second half

aus LICHT: Day 1 © Ruth & Martin Walz
The performers in Part 1 of aus LICHT at the Holland Festival are amazing, but the production doesn’t rev up until the Archangel Michael goes on his dizzying world tour.
***11
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Bob Wilson's cool minimalist Butterfly is back in Amsterdam

Elena Stikhina and Sergio Escobar © BAUS
Robert Wilson's Madama Butterfly is back in Amsterdam starring rising star Elena Stikhina as the doomed Cio-Cio-San.
***11
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Biography

Dutch National Opera is known for its diverse programming, from classic to contemporary operas, and for the reliably outstanding quality of its performances. With innovative productions, specially-composed works and a fresh approach to the standard repertoire, Dutch National Opera ensures the longevity of this splendid art form. With Pierre Audi as its artistic director and now, following the merger, as director of Dutch National Opera, the company has garnered worldwide recognition and its new productions invariably attract widespread attention. In 2013 DNO won the international Opera Award for the best production of the year.

The company was founded shortly after the Second World War and developed from a repertory company to a ‘stagione’ company. This means that Dutch National Opera does not have a full-time ensemble and that it stages an average of one opera per month, for which guest soloists and separate artistic teams are brought in.

Dutch National Opera does have its own full-time chorus, made up of fifty-six professional singers. The Chorus is considered one of the finest in Europe and was nominated for the best choral performance of the year in 2013. For most of its productions, DNO works with the Netherlands Philharmonic Orchestra and Netherlands Chamber Orchestra. The chief conductor is Marc Albrecht.

Most of DNO’s productions can be seen in National Opera & Ballet, but performances are also held in other venues, among them the Amsterdam Stadsschouwburg, Royal Theatre Carré, the Westergasfabriek or the Muziekgebouw aan ‘t IJ. Many of DNO’s operas continue to attract the attention of, and invitations from, international opera houses and festivals. Co-productions with renowned companies such as the Metropolitan Opera in New York, Opéra de Paris or the Teatro alla Scala in Milan are now regular partnerships.