Home » Opera and Ballet » Werther at the Royal Opera House – 19th June to 13th July 2016

Werther at the Royal Opera House – 19th June to 13th July 2016



Joyce DiDonato and Vittorio Grigòlo lead the cast with Antonio Pappano conducting in Benoît Jacquot’s production of Massenet’s operatic tragedy.

Jules Massenet was inspired from Goethe’s novel Die Leiden des jungen Werthers (1774; The Sorrows of Young Werther) and was determined to turn the novel into an opera. He began the score in 1885 and finished it in 1887, but Werther’s premiere did not come until 1892. It has been a permanent part of the international repertory since 1903. Werther and Manon have proved Massenet’s most enduringly popular works.

The libretto, prepared by Edouard Blau and Paul Milliet, condenses Goethe’s Romantic masterpiece about love and tragedy. The score includes some of Massenet’s most loved music with the ‘Clair de lune’, ‘Lied d’Ossian’ and Charlotte’s ‘Prière’ .

The story centres around Werther who loves Charlotte, but she promised her mother on her deathbed that she would marry Albert. After the marriage Charlotte suggests that Werther should travel. Charlotte, unhappily married, has fallen in love with Werther through his letters. He returns unexpectedly; Charlotte sends him away. Werther shoots himself and dies in Charlotte’s arms.

Running times

About 3 hours, including two intervals


Sung in French with English surtitles

If you would like more information or buy tickets, visit the Royal Opera House website here

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