King Louis XIV Reigns Supreme Once Again this Season


King Louis XIV Reigns Supreme Once Again This Season

Charpentier’s Chamber Opera Les Plaisirs De Versailles Opens Ars Lyrica Houston’s 2016/17 Season

HOUSTON, TX (August 12, 2016) – Ars Lyrica Houston, the Grammy nominated early music ensemble, revisits the works of Marc-Antoine Charpentier for their opening season program with Les Plaisirs de Versailles, September 9, 2016, on the Zilkha Hall Stage at the Hobby Center for the Performing Arts. Charpentier’s witty chamber opera returns for an encore performance after his Les arts florissants was performed to a sold out audience in the previous season’s “Homage to the Sun King.”

Most of the opera’s characters represent the pleasures enjoyed at the Palace of Versailles: La Musique (Music), La Conversation (Conversation), Le Jeu (Gambling), Comus and Un plaisir (A Pleasure). This gilded event sets the scene for the program, devoted to lighthearted repertoire from the ancien régime, exploring familiar pleasures—wine, music, conversation, and complaint—that come together most amusingly throughout the colorful evening. “What’s not to like about this little gem of an opera? Delightful subject matter, laugh-out-loud funny, gorgeous tunes, and all within barely 30 minutes — I only wish there were more of these in the repertoire!” says Matthew Dirst, Artistic Director for Ars Lyrica Houston.

Additionally, our cast of composers includes two giants of the French Baroque—Jean-Baptiste Lully and François Couperin—plus two of Paris’ most enterprising musical entrepreneurs. Surrounding these gems are short instrumental dances from various Lully sources, including his charming 1668 pastorale La Grotte de Versailles and a collection of Trios pour le coucher du Roy (for the King’s Bedtime).

A feature of the evening includes the very highly anticipated return of stage director Tara Faircloth, “Tara and I are both delighted to be collaborating on Charpentier’s Les Plaisirs de Versailles again, which we collaborated on first in 2010,” adds Dirst. Patrons can expect many highlights, including the sounds of mezzo-soprano Ellie Jarrett Shattles, baritone Mark Diamond, theorbist Michael Leopold, and so many more!


Les Plaisirs De Versailles

Friday, September 9, 2016 at 7:30pm

Zilkha Hall, Hobby Center for the Performing Arts


Ticket Prices: $39-$65, $22 Students

For more information or to purchase tickets, visit or call the Hobby Center Box Office at 713.315.2525