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“The Labèque sisters are tremendous. They’re great performers, and great interpreters. And they’re wonderful supporters of music‒not only modern music, but just music.” Philip Glass





“I love the way they play Philip Glass. They have the right style, the right approach. They don’t overly dramatize or emote.”

Michael Riesman, musical director of the Philip Glass Ensemble


Katia and Marielle Labèque, the famous pianist sister duo with a career spanning more than fifty years, release their new album dedicated to the music of Philip Glass, completing his operatic triptych, based on the films by Jean Cocteau.


After their much-acclaimed recording of Les Enfants Terribles in 2020, Katia and Marielle now present the remaining two works in the Cocteau Trilogy: Orphée and La Belle et la Bête, arranged for them by Michael Riesman.


“…remarkable playing: their velveteen touch interrupted periodically by harsh attacks, their exchange of patterns, sounds and colours almost liquid.”

The Guardian, about the UK premiere of Les Enfants Terribles


“The recording by the Labèques of this for DG is a miracle of performance.”

 Seen and Heard International, about Les Enfants Terribles


26 JANUARY 2024 (TORONTO, ON) — “When I began work on the Cocteau trilogy, the first idea that governed my work was to bring out the underlying themes of the three films. They are best described as a pair of dualities – life/death and creativity being the first; and the ordinary world and the world of transformation and magic being the second. These topics are at the core of all three works and are explicitly put forward in the films. Whereas the first trilogy of operas (Einstein on the Beach / Satyagraha / Akhnaten) was about the transformation of society through the power of ideas and not through the force of arms, this second trilogy from the 1990s revolves around the transformation of the individual – the moral and personal dilemmas of a person as opposedto a whole people or society. A corollary to this is the way in which magic and the arts are used to transform the ordinary world into a world of transcendence. These three films of Cocteau are meant as a discussion, description, and instruction on creativity and the creative process.


PHILIP GLASS in Words without music


A student of Nadia Boulanger from 1964 to 1966, Philip Glass was a Francophile – and his love of French culture was not limited to music. After his trilogy of portraits (Einstein, Gandhi and Akhenaton), he turned to the works of Jean Cocteau for his operas. He thus revisited the myth of Orphée (Orpheus) and La Belle et la Bête (Beauty and the Beast). He closes his trilogy with Les Enfants Terribles (The Holy Terrors), a novel that is both tragic and frighteningly light, in which two children gain imaginary and limitless freedom within the four walls of their bedroom. These are subjects that Glass's hypnotic, infinite music embraces to perfection, under the fingers of Katia and Marielle Labèque.


In 2020, Katia and Marielle Labèque recorded the instrumental suites for two pianos taken from Philip Glass’s opera Les Enfants Terribles, based on the film by Cocteau. The success of both the record and their concerts – held at venues including the Philharmonie de Paris and the Royal Festival Hall in London – left the pianists all the more eager to ask Philip Glass and Michael Riesman to complete the Cocteau Trilogy by adapting the remaining two operas: Orphée and La Belle et la Bête.


With the Cocteau Trilogy, Katia and Marielle Labèque continue their exploration of the American repetitive composer’s repertoire, of whom they are major interpreters. While Four Movements for Two Pianos swiftly became a staple of their recitals, in 2015 the artists also added Philip Glass’ Double piano concerto to the impressive list of works composed for them (Los Angeles Philharmonic, conducted by Gustavo Dudamel).


The Cocteau Trilogy will premiere in spring 2024 at the Philharmonie de Paris, then at the Opéra National de Bordeaux, the Cité musicale in Metz, the National Concert Hall in Dublin and the Barbican Centre in London. The pianists teamed up with stage director Cyril Teste and set designer Nina Chalot to create an atmosphere of intimacy using a chandelier placed above them. The object offers endless different possibilities in terms of staging and dramatics to enlighten listeners during the successive performances of the three suites.


Katia and Marielle Labèque – tour dates :


28.01. | LONDON, UK - Royal Festival Hall

14.02. | ROUEN, FR - Opera de Rouen Normandie - PHILIP GLASS

15.02. | EVREUX, FR - Cadran - PHILIP GLASS

16.02. | FOGGIA, IT

18.02. | LECCE, IT

19.02. | BARI, IT

07, 08, 09, 10.03. | PARIS, FR - Cité de la Musique - PHILIP GLASS - Cocteau Trilogy

13, 15.03. | STUTTGART, DE - Beethoven-Saal - SWR Symphonieorchester, Maxim Emelyanychev, conductor

23.03. | BORDEAUX - Auditorium - PHILIP GLASS - Cocteau Trilogy

27.03. | METZ, FR - PHILIP GLASS - Cocteau Trilogy

02.04. | TORINO, IT - Holden School

04.04. | JAEN, ES

10.04. | BUDAPEST, HU - Electric Fields

13, 14.04. | ZURICH, CH - Tonhalle - Electric Fields, with Barbara Hannigan, soprano

18, 19, 21.04. | LOS ANGELES, US - with LA Phil, Gustavo Gimeno, conductor - works by Muhly and Dessner

25.04. | GILMORE PIANO FESTIVAL, US - Stetson Chapel, Kalamazoo College

03.05. | CINCINNATI, US - Ballroom Music Hall - Bryce Dessner - Double Piano Concerto

08, 09, 11.05. | MONTREAL, CA - with Orchestre symphonique de Montréal, Fabien Gabel, conductor

15.05. | LILLE, FR

15.06. | DUBLIN, IR - National Concert Hall - PHILIP GLASS - Cocteau Trilogy

17.06. | LONDON, UK - Barbican Centre - PHILIP GLASS - Cocteau Trilogy

28.06. | LYON, FR - Les Nuits de Fourvière - PHILIP GLASS - Cocteau Trilogy

24.08. | RAVEL FESTIVAL, FR - PHILIP GLASS - Cocteau Trilogy

30.08. | LA CHAISE DIEU, FR - Philip Glass

25.09. | FRANKFURT, DE - Alte Oper - Philip Glass

03, 04.10. | MUNICH, DE

08.10. | AIX-EN-PROVENCE, FR - Philip Glass

13.10. | AMSTERDAM, NL - Concertgebouw

02.11. | AMSTERDAM, NL - Concertgebouw - Dream House Quartet with Bryce Dessner, David Chalmin

04.11. | BERLIN, DE - Philharmonie - Dream House Quartet with Bryce Dessner, David Chalmin

05.11. | HAMBURG, DE - Elbphilharmonie - Dream House Quartet with Bryce Dessner, David Chalmin

06.11.2024 | KOLN, DE – Philharmonie - Dream House Quartet with Bryce Dessner, David Chalmin

07.11. | VILNIUS, LT - Dream House Quartet with Bryce Dessner, David Chalmin

15, 16.11. | BRUXELLES, BE - with Belgian National Orchestra, Anthony Hermus, conductor

21.11. | DIJON, FR - Dream House Quartet with Bryce Dessner, David Chalmin

23.11. | BRUXELLES, BE - Dream House Quartet with Bryce Dessner, David Chalmin