Barbe & Doucet

Opera Producer/Stage Director and Set & Costume Designer

Biography

After separate beginnings in dance, theatre, television and the opera field Renaud Doucet, Stage director & Choreographer, and André Barbe, Set & Costume Designer, joined forces in 2000. Since then they created together over 30 new opera productions that are recognized for their creativity, sense of spectacle and minutely detailed dramaturgy.

Their work as a team gained international recognition with their new productions of DIE ZAUBERFLÖTE at the Glyndebourne Festival, LA CENERENTOLA and LA BELLE HÉLÈNE at the Staatsoper Hamburg, SAMSON & DALILA at the Kungliga Operan in Stockholm, DIE FEEN by Wagner – for the bicentenial celebrations – for Oper Leipzig in coproduction with the Bayreuther Festspiele, LES CONTES D’HOFFMANN at Oper Bonn & Volksoper Wien, PÉNÉLOPE by Fauré, SI J’ÉTAIS ROI by Adam, THÉRÈSE / LA NAVARRAISE by Massenet and IL BRAVO by Mercadante at the Wexford Festival Opera (Ireland), ARABELLA and LA GRANDE DUCHESSE DE GEROLSTEIN at Oper Köln – for the 2019 bicentenial celebrations of Jacques Offenbach in his native city, CENDRILLON by Massenet at l’Opéra National du Rhin in Strasbourg & l’Opéra de Marseille (France), New York City Opera (USA), Badisches Staatstheater Karlsruhe (Germany) and L’Opéra de Montréal (Canada), BENVENUTO CELLINI and IPHIGENIE EN AULIDE at l’Opéra National du Rhin, IL MATRIMONIO SEGRETO at the Innsbrucker Festwochen der Alten Musik & Oper Köln, TURANDOT at Opera Philadelphia, Seattle Opera, Minnesota Opera, Atlanta Opera, Utah Opera, Cincinnati Opera & Vancouver Opera, LA BOHÈME at Scottish Opera, Theatre St Gallen & Vancouver Opera, the Viennese premiere of THE SOUND OF MUSIC, TURANDOT and RUSALKA at the Volksoper Wien (Austria), THAÏS at Opera Theatre of Saint Louis, l’Opéra de Montréal, Palm Beach Opera, Boston Lyric Opera & Florida Grand Opera, PELLÉAS ET MÉLISANDE and THE RAPE OF LUCRETIA at L’Opéra de Montréal, a North American production of LES CONTES D’HOFFMANN at Opera Theatre of Saint Louis, Boston Lyric Opera, Opera Colorado & Florida Grand Opera, MANON at the Scottish Opera & Malmö Opera, the entire 2009-10 season of Florida Grand Opera in Miami with LUCIA DI LAMMERMOOR, IL PAGLIACCI, SUOR ANGELICA, IL BARBIERE DI SIVIGLIA & CARMEN; DON PASQUALE at Scottish Opera, Florida Grand Opera & Teatro Carlo Felice of Genova.

Upcoming productions will bring them to the Teatro Regio di Parma, Hamburg Staatsoper, Latvian National Opera, Rossini Festival in Pesaro, Cincinnati Opera, Lithuanian National Opera.

André Barbe received a bachelor of Fine Arts at Concordia University then studied at the National Theatre School of Canada under the tutelage of designer François Barbeau. Up to now he designed over 300 productions for Theatre, Television and Opera.  He received the Irish Times Irish Theatre Award 2005 for best designer for the production of Pénélope at Wexford Festival Opera as well as the 2011 Rolf-Mares Prize for best sets & costumes for the production of La Cenerentola at the Hamburgische Staatsoper.
Since 2010 he is regularly invited to teach Set & Costume design at the National Theatre School of Canada.

Trained musician Renaud Doucet began his performing career as a solo dancer, ballet master, teacher and choreographer in international dance companies. He was introduced to the opera world as baroque choreographer & baroque gesture specialist coaching singers like Alfredo Kraus, Jaime Aragall, Raina Kabaivanska or Mirella Freni. He also worked as an actor in various movies & TV series.

In 2019 their production of Il Bravo by Mercadante received the Irish Times Theatre Award for Best Opera Production.

Reviews

”Magical, Witty, Irreverent. A visual feast of eccentricity” – DIE ZAUBERFLÖTE

Erica Jeal

The Guardian

”Every opera I have ever seen staged by the director/designer team of Renaud Doucet and André Barbe has been visually memorable and Vancouver opera’s new La Bohème is no exception”.

 

Robert Jordan

Opera Canada

“The audience roared its approval at the conclusion of Cincinnati Opera’s “Turandot” in Music Hall Saturday night – and for good reason. It was, without a doubt, the most dazzling production of Puccini’s “Turandot” this city has ever seen.”

Janelle Gelfand

Cincinnati.com

More Reviews

”Renaud Doucet’s new production is stunningly designed with plenty of theatrical fizz. (…)” LA BOHÈME –
The Times

”Lavishly designed and staged – The Arts Desk / Boyd Tonkin- Este espectáculo muy bien cantado, con ideas bien pensadas y ejecutadas y con un dejo intelectual, demostró que es posible hacer de esta obra sin par algo elegante, diferente y al mismo tiempo aportar un mensaje sutil de igualdad”. DIE ZAUBERFLÖTE

Opera Actual

 

”Quirkier and funnier than most productions of La Bohème, this production looks likely to tour well”.

The Herald

 

”Vancouver Opera’s latest staging of Puccini’s La Bohème is a handsome production of a perennial favourite. It’s also a sequel of sorts to last season’s lavish Turnadot by the direction/design team of Renaud Doucet and Andre Barbe, who have updated the story of love in the garrets of Paris to a vaguely 1920s mise en scène”

Vancouver Sun

 

“André Barbe and Renaud Doucet managed to combine the worlds of verismo Liù, fairy tale Prince and mythic Ice Princess into an exciting and moving whole. Barbe’s set worked wonderfully on all levels… Doucet’s brilliant choreography kept the large cast of characters in outstanding form… and Barbe’s flamboyantly colourful costumes repeatedly fell into their patterned places like a king-size kaleidoscope.”

Opera News

“Detail counts at every level at a startling micro level. As such, this production grabs you from the word go […] this production is indestructible.”

Opera Now