Ariane et Bachus

Music by Marin Marais
Libretto by Saint-Jean


Did you miss history in the making when Haymarket Opera Company gave the first performance in over 300 years of Marais’ Ariane et Bachus? Here is your chance to enjoy a full-length live video of this epic production!

This production at the Studebaker Theater was generously sponsored by M. Scott Anderson.


Ariane et Bachus – a perfectly balanced blend of music, poetry, dance, and spectacle, and a story of betrayal, revenge, and love—debuted in Paris in 1696 during the long reign of King Louis XIV. Its composer, the young Marin Marais, was already a famous virtuoso of the viola da gamba and his compositions were being played everywhere. His teacher Jean-Baptiste Lully’s tragédies en musique had established the supreme elegance of the French musical style throughout Europe and were revered and imitated by the likes of Handel and Bach. Composers such as Marais and Charpentier were suddenly at liberty to have their operas performed when Lully’s exclusive patent on operatic production in France expired with his untimely death from a self-inflicted wound to his foot with his own conducting staff. 

Librettist Saint-Jean drew on Ovid’s Metamorphoses, the classical collection of myths, as a starting point for the love story of Ariadne and Bacchus. After Ariadne showed her lover Theseus how to escape the labyrinth, avoiding being devoured by the Minotaur, he ran off with her sister Phaedra. Grief-stricken, Ariadne decides she will never love again, rejecting a would-be suitor, Adraste. When Bacchus, the god of wine, arrives in Naxos he falls instantly in love with Ariadne. She rebuffs him at first, but soon discovers she loves him. When Juno hears that Bacchus—the son of her husband Jupiter through an affair with Semele—has been welcomed to the shores of Naxos, she descends to seek revenge.  Juno and Adraste team up to destroy the lovers’ new-found happiness.

Under the direction of Craig Trompeter, Haymarket Opera Orchestra—Chicago’s premier period instrument orchestra—will introduce you to Marais’ lush score for violins, multiple violas, bass violin, viola da gamba, violone, harpsichord, archlute, theorbo, recorders, oboes, flutes, and bassoon. Director and choreographer Sarah Edgar brings her renowned flair to the spectacular staging and dance, featuring the newly formed Haymarket Opera Company Ballet, while costume designer Meriem Bahri works her usual sensual visual magic. 

A special thanks to Garry Grasinski of Grayson Media, INC. for the production of this full-length production video!



Ariane - Kristin Knutson, Soprano
Bachus -
Scott Brunscheen, Tenor
Adraste -
Ryan de Ryke, Baritone
Geralde - David Govertsen, Bass
Junon -
Erica Schuller, Soprano
Corcine -
Nathalie Colas, Soprano
Le Roy -
Aaron Wardell, Baritone
Dircée -
Kimberly McCord, Soprano
L'Amour -
Olivia Doig, Soprano
Un songe -
Kaitlin Foley, Soprano
Un suivant du Roy -
Margaret Fox, Mezzo Soprano
Un songe -
Quinn Middleman, Mezzo Soprano
Alecton -
William Dwyer, Tenor
Phantase -
Justin Berkowitz, Tenor
Matelot -
Kevin Krasinski, Bass
Lycas -
Kyle Sackett, Baritone

Haymarket Opera Company Ballet

Joseph Caruana, Dancer
Julie Benirschke, Dancer
Kali Page, Dancer
Mary O'Rourke, Dancer
Andrew Erickson, Dancer

Production Team

Craig Trompeter, Music Director
Sarah Edgar, Stage Director and Choreographer
Meriem Bahri, Costume Design
Mike Winkelman, Stage Design
Lindsey Lyddan, Lighting Design
Donald Nally, Chorus Master

Score prepared by Silvana Scarinci and LAMUSA under the supervision of Professor Graham Sadler (Birmingham Conservatoire, UK) and sponsored by CAPES (Coordenação de Aperfeiçoamento de Pessoal de Nível Superior, fundação do Ministério da Educação), Brazil. 

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