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Les Choregies d’Orange

Last updated: 13 March, 2024

Begun in 1860, the Choregies d’Orange is the oldest festival in France. Every year the city’s ancient Theatre Antique (with seating for 9,000) hosts a brief but exceptional opera and lyric music programme, starring performers such as Roberto Alagna.

The acoustics are perfect (aided by the installation of a new glass roof over the stage) and the sets, using the huge Roman stage wall, are breathtaking, making for an unforgettable night at the opera – under the stars.

Logistics

Price from: £30
Minimum age: 0
Age suitable: 18+
Frequency: annually
When: July-August
Duration: 5 weeks

Getting there & doing it

The main events take place in the Roman theatre, but films, recitals and smaller events are held in the nearby Chapelle Saint-Louis.

Tickets go on sale on the official website in early October the previous year and are posted to buyers up to 15 days before a performance – or held at the office for collection.

Arrive in good time as it can be hard to locate your seat, and bring binoculars or opera glasses as well as a good cushion for the hard seats. Wet weather gear is also an idea.

Toilets are pretty basic, and you’ll need to eat before you go; there are drinks sold during the intermission, but that’s all.

When to do it

The festival runs for 5 weeks, from the second week of July to the first week in August.