Château Versailles Spectacles - La Finta Pazza


Saturday 03 December 2022

19:00 to 22:15

Entracte included

Sunday 04 December 2022

15:00 to 18:15

Entracte included

Location : Opéra Royal
  • La Finta Pazza


Opera in a prologue and three acts to a libretto by Giulio Strozzi, first performed in Venice in 1641.
The incredible success of La Finta Pazza in Venice in 1641 is often attributed to the presence of the diva Anna Renzi and Torelli's amazing machinery. But a show with a very good singer and impressive machinery can achieve absolutely nothing if the music is not extraordinary. As soon as I became aware of this score, which has hardly ever been performed today, I immediately understood that this music had an astonishing quality, and why it had produced, even in France, such a striking effect on the young Louis XIV. It is a piece that proposes something new in the history of music, at a time when opera is becoming public, with an extremely accomplished relationship between text and music. It is this quality, the quality of this music, that explains why La Finta Pazza was the first opera to be performed at the French court in 1645, a country that did not know opera at all.

If we compare Sacrati's music with that of Monteverdi, we can see that it is already much more ornate, with more coloratura and more explicit virtuosity, which Monteverdi tried to avoid when the text did not suggest it, and which led him to the later opera. Sacrati is actually closer to a composer like Cavalli, even if in the harmony he proposes very new things, such as 4/2, ninths/sevenths, compound chords, which are not found in either Monteverdi or Cavalli. It was thought that this type of chord would arrive later, but it turns out that it is already present in Sacrati. In La Finta Pazza, I rediscover this type of harmonies and intervals that can be heard in the 'Pur ti miro' of the Coronation of Poppea, which for me is clearly an intervention by Sacrati in the score. As for the rest, this is really a composer who is in the process of inventing a style, of building a laboratory of emotions, so his music is still in the process of becoming, he does not have a style that is absolutely his own. However, there is a naturalness in his music that makes him a great composer who deserves to be named alongside Cavalli or Monteverdi. Since the only available score of La Finta Pazza comes from a revival in Piacenza in 1644, one might have feared that a foreign hand had added music. This is not the case. There is absolute homogeneity of style, even in the instrumental parts.

The basso continuo, of course, plays a predominant role in this music. Since its invention, around 1600, the basso continuo has become the pulse that supports the breathing of the singers, the development of colours, a sort of second set, an emotional set. We must therefore have a great wealth of instruments, lutes, archlutes, guitars, harps, harpsichords, organs, violas da gamba, lyres: these are all instruments that can give the text the essential relief so that the audience can understand and feel the emotion thanks to the colour of the basso continuo. My approach to La Finta Pazza will not be different from the one I had for the operas of Monteverdi and Cavalli: it is always the text that dictates how and who should accompany it.

La Finta Pazza played a fundamental role in the export of Italian opera, particularly in France, where the Italian presence will never really cease: after Sacrati, there will be Rossi, Cavalli, Lully, up to Piccini, Rossini, Donizetti etc. in the 18th and 19th centuries. All this history began with this Finta Pazza; it is the one that inoculated the "opera" virus in France. It therefore seemed to me essential that this re-creation, after almost four centuries, should take place in France.
General information
  • Cultural and artistic :
    • Concert
    • Opera
  • Music :
    • Classical music
Château de Versailles Spectacles
Opéra Royal
Château de Versailles
  • Spoken language(s) :
    • French


FaresRates periodMinMax
03/12/2022 - 04/12/2022
AdultA l'année41.00€151.00€
Category 3:41€ à 49€
Category 2: 59€ à 70€
Category 1: 78€ à 92€
Prestige: 113€ à 130€
Prestige VIP: 151€

PRESTIGE VIP CATEGORY: The best seats in the house, the programme and a free glass of champagne.

PRESTIGE CATEGORY: Very good seats, the programme and a glass of champagne free.

DISCOUNT RATE for people under 26, holders of the Château de Versailles Spectacles card and groups of more than 10 people (except for companies).

For a better reception, we strongly advise people with reduced mobility to reserve their seats by telephone on 01 30 83 78 89.

In case of technical problems, the ticketing team is at your disposal by telephone on 01 30 83 78 89 (Monday to Friday from 11am to 6pm) or on site in our ticket office-boutique (3 bis rue des Réservoirs, 78000 Versailles; Monday to Friday from 11am to 6pm, as well as on Saturdays when the shows are not on the Grandes Eaux Musicales from 2pm to 5pm) to help you make your reservation.


Château de Versailles
GPS coordinates
Latitude : 48.806068
Longitude : 2.122558
We also suggest...
  • Sérénade royale de la Galerie des Glaces
    Château de Versailles Spectacles
  • cvs
    Château de Versailles Spectacles - Jacquet de la Guerre : Cephale et Procris
  • cvs
    Château de Versailles Spectacles - Mademoiselle Duval : Les génies
  • cvs
    Château de Versailles Spectacles - Poro, Re delle Indie