Published on November 21, 2019


Quebec City, November 21, 2019 – Music director Jonathan Cohen and Les Violons du Roy welcome mezzo-soprano Christine Rice for a varied program of richly dramatic works. Together they will perform a selection of the most beautiful opera arias ever written by Rameau, Handel, and Purcell as well as Britten’s Phaedra, a dramatic cantata inspired by Jean Racine’s play. The concert Amours tragiques will be performed on Thursday, November 28, at 8 p.m. at Quebec City’s Palais Montcalm – Maison de la musique and Saturday, November 30, at 8 p.m. at Bourgie Hall, Montreal Museum of Fine Arts.

Christine Rice is a leading mezzo soprano of her generation and a regular at the Royal Opera House in London and the English National Opera, having performed title roles in Carmen and The Rape of Lucretia, Donna Elvira (Don Giovanni), Nero (Agrippina), Zenobia (Radamisto), Marguerite (La damnation de Faust), and Nicklausse (Les contes d’Hoffman). She has also appeared at the Glyndebourne Festival and at major opera houses around the world, including the Deutsche Oper Berlin, Opéra Comique in Paris, Teatro Real in Madrid, the Metropolitan Opera in New York City, and the Seattle Opera. With her enchanting timbre, Christine Rice joins Les Violons du Roy to stirringly evoke every nuance in this program of vocal works on the theme of broken, forbidden, and fatal romance.

The second part of the concert will also showcase the talent and artistry of Les Violons du Roy, who will perform works by Pärt and Elgar. This concert will also mark the first-ever performance of works by Polish composer Grażyna Bacewicz by the orchestra. It will feature her Concerto for String Orchestra, a magnificent work that demands deep expression and great virtuosity.

The concert on November 28 in Quebec City will be preceded at 7:10 p.m. by an on-stage interview with actress Lorraine Côté on her brilliant and impassioned theater portrayal of Phaedra. In addition, Fondation SABSA will hold a preconcert fundraiser at 6 p.m. in the Palais Montcalm – Maison de la musique gallery. 

Tickets on sale at the box offices of Palais Montcalm – Maison de la musique at 418-641-6040 (toll free 1-877-641-6040) and the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts at 514-285-2000, option 4 (toll free 1-800-899-6873).


Amours tragiques is presented by Radio-Canada.
Les Violons du Roy’s Quebec City season is presented by Hydro-Québec.
Les Violons du Roy would like to thank Conseil des arts et des lettres du Québec, Canada Council for the Arts, Ville de Québec, and the Government of Canada for their support.


Christine Rice, mezzo-soprano (photo: Patricia Taylor)


Information and interviews: 
Noora Heiskanen
Communications Coordinator
Les Violons du Roy and La Chapelle de Québec
Tel. 418-692-3026, ext. 230