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The Damnation of Faust NB Change of Artists

London Symphony Orchestra/Sir Simon Rattle

Photo of Sir Simon Rattle conducting

From selling your soul to the devil to finding salvation – Sir Simon Rattle ventures through Berlioz's tempestuous oratorio, The Damnation of Faust.

Berlioz’s The Damnation of Faust is a work born of the composer’s obsession with Goethe's legendary tale. Once a righteous scholar, Faust allows himself to be corrupted by the devil, and drags the innocent around him into desperation and death. It’s a fable that defies definition – both a tragedy and dark comedy, with a central character both wise and despicable, and a play and epic poem in one. 

Mystified by this tragic story, Berlioz’s work is, too, an astounding hybrid of opera, oratorio and, in the composer’s own words, ‘dramatic legend’. From tender moments of religious piety to incessant military marches and terrifying flourishes of demonic fury, Sir Simon Rattle leads the LSO in a colossal choral work like none other.

Broadcast live on BBC Radio 3

Broadcast live on and available on replay for 3 months

Live streamed on the LSO YouTube channel


Change of Soloists
In a change to listings published when the 2017/18 season first went on sale, bass soloist Gábor Bretz will now sing the role of Brander in these performances, replacing Florian Boesch.
Posted Mon 5 Jun 2017 5pm

Gerald Finley is unwell and has been forced to withdraw from the performances of The Damnation of Faust on 17 and 19 September 2017. The LSO is delighted that Christopher Purves has agreed to step in to sing the role of Mephistopheles at very short notice.
Posted Wed 13 Sep 4pm

Pre-concert event

5pm Barbican Foyers
LSO Sing Choral Fanfares

Broadcast Partners

Barbican Hall