Einstein on the Beach / Philip Glass

Suzanne Vega, Ensemble Ictus & Collegium Vocale Gent

Einstein on the BeachEinstein on the Beach © Maxime Fauconnier
Suzanne VegaSuzanne Vega © George Holz
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Sunday, 5 July 2020 — 4:30pm
Monday, 6 July 2020 — 8:00pm
Salle des concerts - Cité de la musique
Duration: about 3h20


  • Einstein on the Beach (version de concert)
  • Philip Glass
    Knee play 1
    Train 1
    Trial 1
    Knee Play 2
    Dance 1 (Field with Spaceship)
    Night Train
    Knee Play 3
    Dance 2 (Field with Spaceship)
    Knee Play 4
    Knee Play 5


  • Ictus
  • Collegium Vocale Gent
  • Suzanne Vega, narrator
  • Georges-Elie Octors, conducting
  • Tom De Cock, conducting
  • Germaine Kruip
  • Igor Semenoff, violin
  • Chryssi Dimitriou, flute
  • Bettina Berger, flute
  • Jean-Luc Plouvier, keyboard
  • Jean-Luc Fafchamps, keyboard
  • Dirk Descheemaeker, bass clarinet, soprano saxophone
  • Asagi Ito, soprano saxophone, alto saxophone
  • Joowon Chung, soprano
  • Magdalena Podkoscielna, soprano
  • Elisabeth Rapp, soprano
  • Charlotte Schoeters, soprano
  • Ursula Ebner, viola
  • Karolina Hartman, viola
  • Gudrun Köllner, viola
  • Cécile Pilorger, viola
  • Malcolm Bennett, tenor
  • Dan Martin, tenor
  • Tom Phillips, tenor
  • Philipp Kaven, bass
  • Bart Vandewege, bass
  • Martin Schicketanz, bass
Philip Glass will not be present at this concert.

A great classic from the second half of the 20th century, the opera composed by Philip Glass will be presented in concert version. A rare opportunity to discover this staggering score in masterful hands and an exceptional production. 

First performed in 1976 at the Festival d’Avignon, with stage direction by Robert Wilson, Einstein on the Beach is a composite portrait of the physicist in four acts and five interludes (the famous Knee Plays). Considered a 20th-century masterpiece, the opera will be performed here in its musical version. Philip Glass’s extraordinary score will be interpreted—in its entirety—by the seven musicians of the Belgian ensemble Ictus, accompanied by the baroque choir Collegium Vocale Gent. And in the role of the narrator, none other than Suzanne Vega, who infuses the text with vitality and lightness. With the set design by artist Germaine Kruip and an immersive sound system, this unprecedented version of Einstein on the Beach changes the audience’s relationship to the work. Everyone can be in motion: the instrumentalists, who change places on stage, and the spectators, who can enter and leave the concert hall freely during the performance, as Robert Wilson intended in 1976. A unique chance to discover a monument of American minimalism in concert.


> Normal rates : 47€ / 35€
> Days Off subscription (subject to availability) : 40€ / 30€


Einstein on the Beach (teaser) Suzanne Vega, Ictus, Collegium Vocale Gent