Eugenia, opera in seventeen scenary
for eight singers, orchestra and dancers
text by Pascal Rambert


Statement of intent

Eugenia is a philosophical, humanist, verist, sociological opera for 8 singers and orchestra (and a ballet). Eugenia (the character) is a young and great actress. She is in her room, lying on her bed. She lives her last hours. Brain cancer is eating away at it. Her family and close friends come to pay them a last visit. This is the moment when the unspoken come back, explode … Everything that has been accumulated, internalized, ruminated for years comes out. It’s a slap in the face that all the characters are caught. No one is spared : the mother, the father, the sister, the husband, the brother-in-law, the daughter, the son, the priest, the doctor … And in this last fight, these last fists launched, these words slapped and lacerated, everyone tries to restore one truth. We discover at this moment the sensitivity and fragility of each. We scratch the social shell and we find fragile, sensitive people. It’s moving. When the carapace jumps, we enter the depth and intimacy of the characters. This brings us to reflect on our own life, our own experience, our own word remained locked in the depths of us, by fear of doing wrong, by fear of anger, to hurt, or simply by fear of facing the eyes of the other … Eugenia is a mise en abyme of what haunts us every day : death, life, loss, love, others, art, money, religion, success, ego, alcohol, disappointments, the need for spirituality. Foundational topics of reflection that we each go through at some point in our lives.



Eugenia is my fifth opera and my first opera with orchestra. I needed a strong, poignant text that speaks of our time, that makes us think about what we are going through. I also had the need to find a language that lends itself to music … It’s not easy to find … I found this in Pascal Rambert’s writing with his play “Actress”. It is for me a wonderful discovering of a text and a writing.
With Pascal Rambert we plunge into the arena of life… in the jungle of society. We are caught up in long monologues that dissect the being, the human, by immersing ourselves in the intimacy of the characters and thus, plunging ourselves into our own character. Pascal Rambert confronts us with our own ruminations, our own unspoken…

It is this reflection on the human, on the relation to the other that I sought to set to music. It is not an action but a state, a feeling, a sensation. I wanted to work on a philosophical opera where musical time can also be an element of reflection. In Eugenia, the listener sees himself tipped and absorbed by the music, the stage, the text to enter his own intimacy, his strong inner…

I composed a lyrical, vocal, sensitive, poignant music that refuses nothing, neither the melody, nor the texture, nor the consonance, nor the purity. All for me is that each element is a bearer of meaning, of dramaturgy, that music can carry the word. I do not ask myself about the language, the contemporaneity, codes to respect to enter the box of the contemporary music. Let’s leave that to the specialists. For my part I want to break the boxes, not by proposing yet another music on sound experimentation but proposing a sensitive, lyrical, poignant music that can revive the interest of contemporary works for an amateur audience, non-music specialist contemporary. Like a novel I wish that my operas can surprise the public and that my works can resonate in them and move the gaze.


Eugénia, mezzo-soprano
Ksénia, mezzo-soprano
Galina, soprano
Eugéni / Alexander, tenor
Pavel / Stanislav, bass baritone
Igor, tenor
Dimitri / Ivan / Artem, counter-tenor ou mezzo-soprano
Svetlana / Yulia / Sergueï, soprano



2 flutes (with one piccolo)
2 oboe (with one english horn)
2 clarinets in Bb (with one bass clarinet)
2 bassoons (with one contrabassoon)
2 french horn in F
2 trumpets in ut
1 tenor trombone (with barillet) 
violins I
violins II
doublebasses (5 strings)


duration 140′