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Britten, Debussy and Ravel

19 March 2020, 7:00pm

Britten Theatre

£10, £20, £30, £40, £50

Britten, Debussy and Ravel

19 March 2020, 7:00pm

Britten Theatre

£10, £20, £30, £40, £50

Michael Rosewell conductor
Olivia Fuchs director
Anna Yates designer

Britten Les Illuminations
Debussy L'enfant prodigue
Ravel L'heure espagnole

The RCM Opera Studio presents a sophisticated evening of one-act masterpieces, celebrating the French language through their elegant libretti.

This trio of Gallic-inspired works depicts themes of forgiveness, deception and art itself, and showcases the versatility of the performers to its fullest extent.

A Prix de Rome-winning dramatic cantata, Claude Debussy’s L’enfant prodigue re-imagines the biblical tale of the prodigal son arriving home to mixed feelings from his parents. Although an early composition by the composer, the work’s effective orchestration and harmonic imagination make it a successful scène lyrique.

Britten’s contemplative song cycle Les Illuminations features settings of Arthur Rimbaud’s poetry, usually with a soprano soloist performing alongside string orchestra. Premiered in London in 1940, by soprano Sophie Wyss, to whom the cycle is dedicated, the work moves away from Britten’s inherent 'Britishness' towards a more cosmopolitan European style, with a distinctly French feel to the music.

By contrast, Ravel’s popular comédie musicale L’heure espagnole takes French as its language, but is set in the Spanish city of Toledo. A humorous end to this triple bill, it follows a farcical plot, featuring the hapless Torquemada, his mischievous wife, and a host of comical characters concealed in clocks…

This production is made possible with the assistance of the Basil Coleman bequest

Sung in French

Please note that this production may contain strobe lighting, and may not be suitable for children under the age of 12.

Plan your visit

Royal College of Music
Prince Consort Road
London SW7 2BS

Find out more

   South Kensington: 0.5 miles
   Gloucester Road: 0.6 miles
   High Street Kensington: 0.8 miles

   Paddington: 1.5 miles
   Victoria: 2 miles

   Santander Cycles docking station and public cycle locking facilities adjacent to RCM

The RCM provides refreshments throughout the year. There is also a range of restaurants, cafés and other establishments nearby, most adjacent to South Kensington station.

RCM Café

The RCM Café serves barista-style coffees, sandwiches, snacks, salads and hot food. There is also access to outside seating in our courtyard.

Opening: Monday–Saturday, 8am–5pm
Hot food service: Monday–Saturday, 11.30am–2.30pm

Evening performance refreshments

The RCM offers a range of light pre-performance and interval refreshments for many of our most popular events. These are served between 6pm and 9pm (5pm for early evening performances) in the Britten Theatre Bar or in the main Foyer outside the Amaryllis Fleming Concert Hall.

The main entrance to the RCM has eight steps up from the pavement and two inside the main doors. A lift is available for visitors with limited mobility. The lift is built into the smaller staircase to the left of the main entrance steps. There is an intercom button on the control panel, which can be seen and reached easily from the street. On arrival, press the buzzer to notify a member of RCM staff, who will come out to meet you and operate the lift for you.

All our event venues can be accessed by visitors with limited mobility via the lift at the main entrance.