Le rêve de Grégoire

Opera
  • Music and libretto: Pierre Michaud
  • Stage direction: René-Daniel Dubois

Synopsis

The opera takes place the night before Gregor’s execution. He doesn’t know why he was arrested. Lying in his cell, exhausted, he falls asleep and in his dreams relives his entire life, distorted as though reflected back to him from a warped mirror: his childhood, his education, his work, the limitations placed on his critical thinking. To add to his confusion, Gregor is accompanied in his dreams by guides stemming from the humanist tradition: Petrarch, Dante, Erasmus, Rabelais, Camus… all worried about the destiny which awaits them and their only living heir. His death would signify their death.

Following Felliniesque logic, all these scenes quickly transform into nightmares and Gregor awakes many times in his cell. A little girl, the incarnation of Mathilda in Dante’s Divine Comedy, keeps him company in the hallway of his death through a little door used to give him food. She will give Gregor the confidence he needs to confront his fate. In the final scene, the soldiers come to get Gregor at dawn for his execution by firing squad. The general asks for his final words. Gregor quotes La Rochefoucauld: «He who lives without folly isn’t as wise as he thinks.» The general screams: «Fire!»

Le rêve de Grégoire (Gregor’s Dream) has ended, and now the metamorphosis can begin…

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