Aug 29, 2008

10 mistakes to avoid when planning an innovative staging of Gounod’s Faust

Staging orientations

  1. Don't make up Faust as an elderly cripple only to rejuvenate him as a flamboyant young man at the end of the act I.
  2. Don't display the catholics' rites too ostentatiously (death of Valentin, church scene, final scene "Christ est ressussité").
  3. Don't make Méphistophélès stand on a wooden barrel for the "Veau d'Or" aria.
  4. Don't portray Valentin provoking Méphistophélès with a crucifix ("C'est une croix" aria).
  5. Jewels aria: no literal or derivative version of a golden/silvery jewels box should appear onstage.
  6. Walpurgis Night: don't show semi-naked women or imitate in any way the Bacchus iconography.
  7. Final scene: don't make Marguerite wear a white immaculate frock, don't tie her with long ropes or chains cemented on the wall and ask her to adopt the position of crucifixion.


  1. Don't dress Méphistophélès in red.
  2. Don't dress Marguerite in any "purity" colours: white, light blue, light pink.
  3. Don't dress the chorus with XIXth century military uniforms.

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