7:30 pm
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DURATION: 2:15 hrs


HALL: Ludger-Duvernay

LOCATION: Monument-National


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Visitors, beggars, stolen money… a double bill featuring the young opera singers of the Atelier lyrique, with stage direction by Martine Beaulne, sets, and costumes.

The Old Maid and the Thief

Composed in 1939, this opera was commissioned by NBC: it is one of the first operas written specifically for the radio, which gave the composer great latitude when it came to stage direction. The libretto, which was written by Menotti himself, is most amusing and hearkens back to the opera buffa style and its imbroglios.


In the story, Miss Todd, a single woman of a certain age, and Laetitia, her beautiful maid, welcome a traveller who has knocked on their door begging for alms. They soon fall for the charms of the good-looking young man and decide to ask him to stay. Their neighbour, Miss Pinkerton, always on top of the latest gossip, tells them that a rumour is going around that an escaped prisoner is roaming the city streets: the two woman believe their guest is the wanted man but decide to keep the information to themselves in the name of love. The plot is filled with twists and turns, the humour is especially subtle, the psychology is refined, and the moral is somewhat ambiguous.

Amahl and the Night Visitors

This work by Italian composer Gian Carlo Menotti has been very popular with American TV viewers over the many years since it premiered, broadcast live from the NBC studios in 1951. This opera is made all the more moving through the values it conveys.


Amahl is a disabled boy who can walk only with a crutch. His mother reprimands him for telling tall tales and, occasionally, lying. He is sitting on his stoop playing his shepherd's pipe when his mother calls for him to come in. She refuses to believe him when he claims to have seen a star “as big as a window” over their roof. Later that night, Amahl’s mother weeps, praying that Amahl will not have to become a beggar. After bedtime, there is a knock at the door. Three splendidly dressed kings introduce themselves and say they are on a long journey to give gifts to a wondrous child who has just been born. The Mother agrees to let them stay for the night. Amahl would so like to join them in their travels! But what could he give to the newborn? He is so poor! He thinks about it… and chooses a most unexpected gift, a strange but especially touching gift. Meeting these mysterious guests will miraculously alter Amahl’s fate…

  • Operas in 1 act each
  • Libretto: Gian Carlo Menotti
  • Premiere: The Old Maid and the Thief (1939) ; Amahl (1951)
  • Sung in English with surtitles in English and French.
  • Production: Opéra de Montréal and the National Theatre School of Canada, in collaboration with the Monument-National.

New Production



Musical Preparation Robin Wheeler / Stage DIrection Martine Beaulne
Set Designer Joëlle Péloquin* / Costume Designer Evita Karasek* / Lighting Designer Catherine Germain* / Stage Director Assistant and Stage Manager Marie-Ève Mercier* / Choreography Manon Oligny
*Bursary recipients of National Theatre School of Canada

The Old Maid and the Thief
Ms. Todd Rachèle Tremblay / Laetitia Florie Valiquette / Mrs. Pinkerton Karine Boucher / Bob Cairan Ryan

Amahl and the Night Visitors

Amahl Frédérique Drolet / His mother Emma Char / King Kaspar Jean-Michel Richer / King Melchior Cairan Ryan / King Balthazar Jeremy Bowes / Page Jonathan Bédard* / Shepherds and Villagers Rachèle Tremblay, Florie Valiquette, Karine Boucher, Gaétan Sauvageau*,  Geoffroy Salvas*
Piano : Jennifer Szeto
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