Chorégies d’Orange – Oranges
History of the festival
The Chorégies d’Orange festival dates from 1860 and is the oldest festival in France. Over the years, the Chorégies have retained all of their freshness and originality, due in part to the name, which comes from the Greek “choreos”, linking them to the Grecian-Latin tradition, to the magnificent site where they take place: the perfectly preserved Roman Theatre, which can hold 9,000 spectators, and which still has its stage wall, the guarantee of exceptional acoustics, and to their vocation, which is lyrical and musical performances, placing them among the very best French festivals and certainly one with an indisputable international reputation.
The first performance took place in 1869, with “Joseph”, an opera by Mehul. At that time, the classic Greek and Roman tragedies were staged there, and the Roman Theatre was also used to promote the French dramatic authors of the era. The use of the Roman Theatre as the stage for lyrical and musical performances became prevalent in 1971, with the creation of the “Nouvelles Chorégies”, which met with immediate, overwhelming success. All of the world’s great lyrical artists have performed there, bestowing international prestige on this ideal stage which continues to prove itself with each passing year.