Pelléas et Mélisande

An enigmatic woman with no past. A love that has no future.

Approx. running time 3 h 10 min, one intermission

SEB presents:

Opera by Claude Debussy

World premiere on April 30, 1902 in Salle Favart

Premiere in the Estonian National Opera on September 22, 2023

Albert-André Lheureux: “It is time that Debussy’s once revolutionary masterpiece be brought to the Estonian audiences. “Pelléas et Mélisande” is as if a magic ritual that awakens a secret world inside and around us.

At the dawn of the 20th century, the flourishing age of symbolism that favours investigation of unknown worlds, Maurice Maeterlinck, the winner of the Nobel Literature Prize wrote a mysterious play “Pelléas et Mélisande” in addition to the famous “The Blue Bird”. Immediately, Claude Debussy saw in it a subject for an opera…

The amazing blend of text and music through musical lights and shadows makes it only vaguely possible to apprehend the secret being of a human. What is the meaning of our life, the journey of our soul, our the meaning of doubts and search for truth? Where is the truth? Everyone searches for it in their own way.

This story shows us what the innocent eye of a child or the child himself catches. He will drag us by hand into the fairy-tale, where the good or the bad spirits seem to choose our paths.

Let the unique blend of music and text take us with them and discover our surroundings like a child who is presented with a world where to look for and find himself. It is a passionate story of poetic love, chained to the torture chair by jealousy, doubt and violence.

Exceptional beauty charms us. In this exclusive piece it reflects in the whirlwind of emotions, while finding its way through the dense forest of our contradictory thoughts”.

Performed in French with subtitles in Estonian and English.


Music director and conductor

Arvo Volmer


Kaspar Mänd

Stage Director

Albert-André Lheureux


Liina Keevallik


Rasmus Rembel

Projection Designers

Andres Tenusaar

Raivo Möllits

Chorus Master

Heli Jürgenson

Assistant to the Chorus Master

Ksenija Grabova

Production Assistant:

Karin Andrekson

Chief Pianist and Repetiteur

Jaanika Rand-Sirp

Pianist and Repetiteurs

Ave Wagner

Riina Pikani

Stage manager

Riina Airenne

Rein Lepnurm


Aule Urb

Juuli Lill

Le Medecin, La Berger

Mart Laur

Kim Sargsyan