La favorite


The great voices of Clémentine Margaine and Ksenia Dudnikova with Michael Spyres and Stephen Costello 

Following his success in Paris with the French version of Lucia di Lammermoor, Donizetti received a new commission from the Opéra, on that occasion based on a libretto by Alphonse Royer, Gustave Vaëz and Eugène Scribe. The result was La favorite, a romantic opera which made a successful debut. The story is set in the 14th century and features a love triangle between King Alphonse XI of Castile, his mistress Leonor and young Fernand.

Donizetti’s work revisits the Liceu in its original French language, following its 2002 debut, under the production guidance of Franco-Spanish director and actor Ariel García Valdés, with the young French mezzo-soprano and rising star Clémentine Margaine and two great tenors, Michael Spyres and Stephen Costello, who share the role of Fernand.

La favorite

Opera in four acts. Libretto by Alphonse Royer, Gustave Vaëz and Eugène Scribe. World premiere: 02/12/1840, Académie Royale de Musique of Paris (French version). First staged in Barcelona: 18/10/1846, Teatre de la Santa Creu (Italian translation). First Liceu performance: 26/11/1850 (trad. italiana). Last Liceu Performance: 29/04/2002 (in the original French version). Liceu total performances: 261.

Artistic profile

Patrick Summers
Stage director
Ariel García Valdés / Derek Gimpel (2017/18 revival)
Set and costume designer
Jean-Pierre Vergier
Lighting designer
Dominique Borrini
Gran Teatre del Liceu
Symphony Orchestra and Chorus of the Liceu Opera Barcelona
Director of the Chorus
Conxita Garcia


Léonor de GuzmanClémentine Margaine8th,11th,14th,17th,20th,22th July
Ksenia Dudnikova10th,13th,16th,19th,21th,24th July
FernandMichael Spyres8th,11th,14th,17th,20th,22th July
Stephen Costello10th,13th,16th,19th,21th,24th July
Alphonse XIMarkus Werba8th,11th,14th,17th,20th,22th July
Mattia Olivieri10th,13th,16th,19th,21th,24th July
BalthazarAnte Jerkunica
InèsMiren Urbieta
GasparRoger Padullés


July 2018

8Sunday17:00Turn TFee 5
10Tuesday20:00Turn DFee 5
11Wednesday20:00Turn HFee 5
13Friday20:00Turn CFee 5
14Saturday18:00Turn FFee 5
16Monday20:00Turn AFee 5
17Tuesday20:00Turn GFee 5
19Thursday20:00Turn BFee 5
20Friday20:00Turn EFee 5
21Saturday20:00Turn PBFee 6
22Sunday18:00Turn PDADFee 6
24Tuesday20:00Turn PCFee 6

Approximate running time 3h 10m

Reasons why you need to see La favorite

  1. Making her debut at the Liceu is French mezzo-soprano Clémentine Margaine, considered one of the best young singing breakthroughs in Europe and the United States.
  2. La favorite revisits the Liceu in its original French version.
  3. One of Donizetti’s most notably romantic operas.
  4. A love triangle set in 14th century Castile.