2-25 Jun 2023


Dutch National Opera & Ballet, Main Stage

Running time

3:05, incl. 1 interval


From € 28

Joana Mallwitz

The little mermaid in Hollywood

Much like the little mermaid, the water nymph Rusalka has one desire: to become human and live on land with the prince she has fallen in love with. A sea witch offers to help her, but not without tremendous sacrifice: Rusalka will only be allowed to undergo this transformation if she gives up her voice. A now mute Rusalka navigates the human world, which proves much more difficult than expected. What does this tell us about humanity? How willing are we to accept differences and stand up for those from other worlds?

Photo: Conductor Joana Mallwitz | © Nikolaj Lund

The little mermaid in Hollywood

Rusalka is Czech composer Antonín Dvořák’s most successful opera and it continues to be immensely popular to this day. Its highlight is often considered to be the wistful, haunting ‘Song to the moon’, in which Rusalka asks the moon to reveal her love to the prince. Dvořák’s composition is achingly stunning, its sound poetic and sensual, creating musical effects that evoke the beauty of nature, while embodying an ethereal quality reminiscent of nymphs and water sprites.


Highly-anticipated debut

The Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra performs Dvořák’s gripping score under the baton of conductor Joana Mallwitz, who will be making her long-awaited debut at Dutch National Opera. She will be working with a phenomenal cast of artists, who have been widely praised for their vocal and acting abilities alike. South African soprano Johanni van Oostrum, Czech tenor Pavel Černoch and German soprano Annette Dasch will all be returning to Dutch National Opera after having starred in lead roles over the past few seasons. They will be joined by a fast-rising opera star, American mezzo-soprano Raehann Bryce-Davis, who will be making her debut in Amsterdam in the role of Jezibaba.

Director Philipp Stölzl, who is having a flourishing career in film as well as opera, presents a new reading of this dark fairy tale about the ill-fated water nymph. His Rusalka will centre on a trans woman who is hoping to make her mark in Hollywood – the land of make believe. Here too cruelty and rejection await Rusalka.

Performance information

Lyrical fairy tale in three acts
Sung in Czech

Libretto  Jaroslav Kvapil

Musical direction  Joana Mallwitz
Stage direction  Philipp Stölzl and Philipp M. Krenn
Lighting design  Philipp Stölzl
Set design  Heike Vollmer, Philipp Stölzl
Costume design  Anke Winckler
Choreography  Juanjo Arqués
Dramaturgy  Simon Berger

The Prince  Pavel Černoch
The Foreign Princess  Annette Dasch
Rusalka  Johanni van Oostrum
Jezibaba, the Witch  Raehann Bryce-Davis
Vodník, the Water Sprite  Maxim Kuzmin-Karavaev
The Turnspit  Karin Strobos
Gamekeeper  Opera Studio
Hunter Georgiy Derbas-Richter*
Inna Demenkova*
Elenora Hu*
Maya Gour*

Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra
Chorus of Dutch National Opera
Chorus master Edward Ananian-Cooper

* Dutch National Opera Studio

Part of Holland Festival

Change in box office opening hours

Please note our box office opening hours will change on March 1.

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 € 158,00 € 143,00 
2nd € 131,00  € 116,00
3rd € 102,00 € 90,00
4th € 81,00 € 73,00
5th € 55,00 € 46,00
6th € 28,00 € 22,00

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.

Student discount and student alert
When a performance is not sold out, students can buy tickets on the day from 1pm for only €19 - regardless of which price category is ordered. Don't forget to bring your college card to be checked at the door.

For some productions a student alert is given. This allows you to book earlier than on the day with student discounts. If you want to sign up for these student alerts, check here.

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Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra

The Royal Concertgebouw has a world-class reputation. In part, it owes this reputation to the distinguished conductors and soloists it has worked with since its founding in 1888. The Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra performs roughly 120 concerts a year, 80 at the Concertgebouw and 40 at other prestigious concert halls. lt also has access to classical music fans all over the world through videos, streams, radio, TV broadcasts, CDs and DVDs. In addition, the orchestra has its own academy that prepares talented young musicians for a career with a renowned orchestra. lts Concertgebouw Orchestra Young Programme is designed specifically for budding musicians between the ages of 14 and 17 from all over Europe. Dutch National Opera has a long and valuable partnership with the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra and they will join us this season for Rusalka, under the baton of Joana Mallwitz.

Photo: Simon van Boxtel


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

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