Faust
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October
Friday
28
07:30 PM
October
Sunday
30
02:00 PM
November
Saturday
05
07:30 PM
November
Tuesday
08
07:30 PM
November
Friday
11
07:30 PM
  • SubjectSubject
  • Running TimeRunning Time
  • AgeAge
  • LanguageLanguage
Language

Sung in French with projected English translation

Age

Appropriate for all ages

Running Time

3 hours, 26 minutes
2 intermissions

Subject

Dare to Dance with the Devil?

 

This French opera, based on Goethe’s famous play, is a gripping exploration of vanity and desire. In desperation the aging philosopher, Faust, agrees to sell his soul to the devil in exchange for the restoration of his youth, and a chance at love with the beautiful Marguerite.

 

This classic drama features storybook sets and costumes and is sure to stun listeners with its lush singing and orchestration.


Cast and Creative Team

Faust 

Michael Fabiano 

Marguerite

Ana María Martínez 

Mephistopheles

Luca Pisaroni

Valentin

Joshua Hopkins

Conductor

Antonino Fogliani 

Production

Francesca Zambello 

Revival Director 

Garnett Bruce

Set and Costume
Designer 

Earl Staley 

Original Lighting
Designer

Ken Billington 

 

Houston Grand Opera Orchestra and Chorus
Richard Bado, Chorus Master
The Sarah and Ernest Butler Chorus Master Chair 

ACT I

The old philosopher Dr. Faust listens bitterly to merrymakers outside, feeling he has gained nothing from his lifelong pursuit of knowledge. Cursing life, Faust invokes the devil, Mephistopheles, and reveals to him his longing for youth and pleasure. Mephistopheles offers to grant Faust’s desire in exchange for his immortal soul. Faust hesitates, but Mephistopheles conjures up a vision of a lovely young girl, Marguerite. Dismissing his scruples, Faust accepts Mephistopheles’ offer and is transformed into a handsome youth.

A town fair is in progress. In the midst of the merriment, Marguerite’s brother, Valentin, prepares to leave for war, and he entrusts his sister to Siebel, a young villager who is in love with her. A student, Wagner, begins the revels, but is interrupted by Mephistopheles, who predicts bad luck for him, as well as for Siebel and Valentin. Mephistopheles then makes a brazen toast to Marguerite; Valentin draws his sword, but it shatters in his hand, revealing Mephistopheles’ true nature to the frightened crowd.

The crowd begins to dance, and Faust is introduced to Marguerite, who declines his offer to escort her home. Faust and Mephistopheles follow her as the soldiers depart for war.

Intermission 

ACT II

Siebel briefly visits Marguerite’s garden and leaves her a bouquet of flowers. Mephistopheles and Faust place a box of jewels next to the bouquet and then hide. Marguerite is reflecting upon the handsome stranger who had spoken to her when she finds the gifts. As she is trying on the jewels, her neighbor Marthe arrives, and Mephistopheles and Faust come out of hiding. Mephistopheles pretends to court Marthe so that Faust can seduce Marguerite. 

Intermission

ACT III

It is winter. Marguerite has borne Faust’s child and he has abandoned her. Valentin returns from war and, in an attempt to defend his sister’s honor, is fatally wounded in a duel with Faust. As Valentin dies, he curses his sister, who, unable to escape her guilt and the devil’s taunts even in church, is driven insane and kills her baby. A remorseful Faust comes to her prison cell to try to persuade her to flee with him, but she implores the angels to save her. She is raised to heaven as Faust descends to hell.

CAST

Faust
Méphistophélès
Joshua Hopkins
Valentin
Dame Marthe
Ben Edquist
Wagner

CREATIVE TEAM

Conductor
Francesca Zambello
Production
Revival Director
Set and Costume Designer
Original Lighting Designer
Michael James Clark
Lighting Realizer
Richard Bado
Chorus Master

* HGO debut
** HGO Studio Artist
*** Former HGO Studio Artist
"In a time when vocal charm is in short supply...Houston resident Ana Maria Martinez's soprano harks back to the golden age."
-Opera News
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Sponsors

General and Mrs. Maurice Hirsch Memorial Opera Fund