Saturday, March 11, 2017
Review: THE PARIS OPERA in RENDEZ-VOUS WITH FRENCH CINEMA 2017
THE PARIS OPERA
L’OPERA DE PARIS
Thursday, March 2, 4:00pm
Saturday, March 11, 3:30pm
THE 22nd RENDEZ-VOUS WITH FRENCH CINEMA
MARCH 1-12, 2017
Tickets & more at
Full Preview at
The Paris Opera / L'Opèra de Paris
Jean-Stéphane Bron, France, 2017, 110m
French with English subtitles
This all-access documentary goes behind the scenes of the Paris Opera, following the array of personnel—management, performers, costumers, cleaning crew—who work to bring breathtaking spectacle to audiences night after night. Over the course of a season, director Jean-Stéphane Bron nimbly juggles a dizzying number of storylines, from labor disputes to procuring a live bull for Schoenberg’s Moses und Aron to a PR crisis involving the head of the company’s ballet. Sweeping in scope yet full of intimate human moments, The Paris Opera offers a candid look at everything that goes into operating one of the world’s foremost performing arts institutions. U.S. Premiere.
Thursday, March 2, 4:00pm
This is a terrific film that celebrates opera, music, and dance. It provides a backstage look at their preparations, management, celebrations and crises that are part of a year at the opera.
This documentary follows in the style of Frederick Wiseman (but with more love for the institution and its cultural products than Wiseman, with his often ascetic aesthetic often reveals). There is no narration, or external information provided, beyond what is said and shown in the film. While this provides a unity of experience, it also leaves many questions about who is who, and what their role is.
It has long been my belief that every documentary should have a companion (transmedia!) informational website that adds (for example) the full text of interviews excerpted in the film, the names and dates and bios of people who appear in the film, links to relevant information, and other important information that does not fit in a single 2 hour film.
(In fact, In 2009, Frederick Wiseman, himself, made a documentary about dance at the Paris Opera -- the link is below).
The film has a loose structure. It is roughly chronological, and it follows two people in particular: Stéphane Lissner, a new Director of the Opera, and Mikhail Timosheko, a young singer with a beautiful bass-baritone voice, through a season of opera. (And they chose well: Timoshenko now, a few years after the film was shot, seems to have a blossoming career.)
This film is a gift for all music, opera, and dance lovers… and an invitation to everyone else!
CAST AND CREW
Director: Jean-Stéphane Bron
Stéphane Lissner - Director of the Paris Opera.
Mikhail Timosheko - a young Bass-Baritone
THE PARIS OPERA - IMDB
JEAN-STEPHANE BRON - IMDB
THE PARIS OPERA - WIKIPEDIA
THE PARIS OPERA BALLET - WIKIPEDIA
WISEMAN’S LA DANSE - IMDB
FREDERICK WISEMAN - WIKIPEDIA