9-25 Feb 2023


Dutch National Opera & Ballet, Main Stage

Running time

1:40, no interval


From €15

Messa da Requiem

Impressive chorus, soloists and dancers directed and choreographed by Christian Spuck

Following the success of Missa in tempore belli the previous season, the Chorus of Dutch National Opera and the dancers of Dutch National Ballet are combining forces once more. Led by choreographer and director Christian Spuck, they share the stage with four soloists, accompanied by the Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra. In his interpretation of Verdi’s Messa da Requiem, Spuck brings together vocal music and dance with great virtuosity, in poetically powerful tableaux. 

Photo: Carlos Quezada

Impressive gesamtkunstwerk to Verdi’s requiem

New collaboration between opera and ballet

Verdi’s Messa da Requiem is sometimes jokingly referred to as ‘Verdi’s best opera’ due to its operatic nature. Verdi put so much drama into the solemn mass that it cries out for a theatrical interpretation, with the addition of moving bodies. Christian Spuck, a product of the renowned choreographic school of Stuttgarter Ballett, has created an unusual staged and choreographic interpretation of the impressive work. For the large-scale production, which had its world premiere at Opernhaus Zürich in 2016, he worked with no fewer than 36 dancers, over 100 chorus members and vocal soloists. 


Universal emotions 

Spuck’s interpretation of Verdi’s famous requiem is an unusual one. Drawing on a refined abstract movement idiom, he steers clear of the religious associations of hell and damnation. Instead, he brings universal human emotions associated with death to the fore, addressing sorrow, fear of the unknown and anger about the fragility of human existence in an impressive mix of vocal music and dance. 


Leading director and choreographer 

Spuck has been artistic director of Ballett Zürich since 2012 and will take up the position of director of Staatsballett Berlin in 2023. Besides the ballets he has created for Ballett Zürich and other leading companies, he has also choreographed and directed several highly acclaimed opera and film productions and won many awards for his work. The musical director is the up-and-coming conductor Eun Sun Kim, who was recently appointed musical director with San Francisco Opera. She will be leading the orchestra, the large chorus and four of today’s most prominent Verdi singers. 

Performance Information

This requiem mass is sung in Latin.

Christian Spuck’s production of Messa da Requiem touches on general human themes and is not a choreographic interpretation of the Catholic Requiem text. 
In order to emphasise the cross-denominational character of the performance, the artistic production team has decided not to use surtitles during this performance.

Musical direction  Eun Sun Kim
Choreography and stage direction  Christian Spuck
Set design  Christian Schmidt
Costumes design  Emma Ryott
Lighting design  Martin Gebhardt
Dramaturgy  Michael Küster, Claus Spahn 

Federica Lombardi (9, 13, 16, 19, 21 and 25 Feb)
Guanqun Yu (10, 14, 17 and 22 Feb)
Yulia Matochkina (9, 13, 16, 19 and 21 Feb)
Agnieszka Rehlis  (10, 14, 17, 22 and 25 Feb)
Freddie de Tommaso (9, 13, 16, 19 and 21 Feb)
Saimir Pirgu (10, 14, 17, 22 and 25 Feb)
Alexander Vinogradov (9, 13, 16, 19 and 21 Feb)
Maxim Kuzmin-Karavaev (10, 14, 17, 22 and 25 Feb)

Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra
Dutch National Ballet (soloists t.b.a)
Chorus of Dutch National Opera
Chorus master  Edward Ananian-Cooper

Original production by Opernhaus Zürich

Trailer - Messa da Requiem

Trailer Messa da Requiem

Ticket prices

Check out the ticket prices per price category via the link below.

Ticket prices

Standard CJP | City Pass |
Youth up to 16
1st € 130,00 € 117,00 
2nd € 100,00  € 93,00
3rd € 80,00 € 66,00
4th € 60,00 € 50,00
5th € 42,00 € 36,00
6th € 20,00 € 17,00

Dutch National Opera & Ballet works with a system of dynamic pricing: during the booking period the ticket prices may increase, depending on demand. Prices exclude € 2,00 booking fee per ticket.

Order tickets

Loading tickets...
Eun Sim Kim

‘That first moment when everyone draws a collective breath’

Conductor Eun Sun Kim about Verdi and freedom.

Photo: Eun Sun Kim | © Kim Tae-hwan

Christian Spuck
Christian Spuck
Choreography and stage direction
read more
Rehearsal Messa da Requiem | Photo: Altin Kaftira
Rehearsal Messa da Requiem | Photo: Altin Kaftira
Rehearsal Messa da Requiem | Photo: Altin Kaftira
Rehearsal Messa da Requiem | Photo: Altin Kaftira
Rehearsal Messa da Requiem | Photo: Altin Kaftira
Rehearsal Messa da Requiem | Photo: Altin Kaftira
Rehearsal Messa da Requiem | Photo: Altin Kaftira
Rehearsal Messa da Requiem | Photo: Altin Kaftira


Almost every performance at Dutch National Opera & Ballet is preceded by an introduction, with background information that can deepen your theatre visit. The introductions are in Dutch and admission is free by showing a valid ticket.

Introduction Messa da Requiem by: Fabienne Vegt

Time: 45 minutes before the start of each performance
Location: 2nd balcony

Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra

Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra

Founded in 1918, the Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra is famed for the intense energy it brings to its performances. Led by principal conductor Lahav Shani, the orchestra is often commended for the huge range of colour in its sound. Lahav Shani’s predecessors, Yannick Nézet-Séguin and Valery Gergiev, have both had honorific titles conferred on them as honorary conductors of the orchestra. The orchestra’s most recent collaboration with Dutch National Opera was in 2021 with the The Seven Deadly Sins. This season, they will provide the musical accompaniment to Messa da Requiem under the direction of up-and-coming conductor Eun Sun Kim.

others also viewed


Animal Farm campagnebeeld met OFF label
Animal Farm
3-16 Mar 2023 | 7 performances
Dutch National Opera & Ballet, Main Stage

A group of animals stages a rebellion on a dilapidated farm to free themselves from a...

info & tickets


Perle Noire campagnebeeld met OFF label
Perle Noire: Meditations for Joséphine
9-13 Mar 2023 | 3 performances
Dutch National Opera & Ballet, Main Stage

She was an exceptionally popular artist, a civilrights activist as well as a heroine of...

info & tickets


Swan Lake
Swan Lake
22 Mar-18 Apr ’23 | 17 performances
Dutch National Opera & Ballet, Main Stage

Big, full-length classical ballets form an essential part of Dutch National Ballet’s...

info & tickets

Opera & Ballet Online

Can't get enough of Ballet? Discover more than 3,487 hours of:

  • ballet classes
  • behind-the-scenes videos
  • interviews & articles
  • fragments
  • games & quizzes