Dutch National Opera presents

Ramble to Reims

This show was to been seen in January 2015

‘Il Viaggio a Reims’ for children and adults aged 8 and above

Gioachino Rossini (1792-1868)
Adaptation: Bob Zimmerman (1948)
after Il Viaggio a Reims
Lyrics: Bindervoet & Henkes
New production

Performed in Dutch

In short

After its successful adaptation of Der Ring des Nibelungen to Ringetje, Dutch National Opera presents Ramble to Reims: once again, an opera geared specifically toward young audiences (and their parents and grandparents).

Having fun with music

Ramble to Reims is a contemporary adaptation, sung in Dutch, of the comic opera Il viaggio a Reims by Rossini. Authors Bindervoet and Henkes wrote new lyrics for the children of today. Composer Bob Zimmerman put these words to Rossini's music, but also composed new recitatives. The orchestra has its own role in this story, where fun with music is foremost.

Foam and air

A wellness centre has organised a day trip. The patrons will travel to Reims to visit an opera, where the king will be present too. After the opera, the guests will be treated to an icecream. But the whole excursion is a shambles, tensions mount and everyone is on their worst behaviour. In a world of foam and (hot) air, it's sometimes hard to see what is truly valuable.

©Erik Bindervoet
©Erik Bindervoet
©Erik Bindervoet


Bindervoet & Henkes
Erik Bindervoet and Robbert-Jan Henkes are known for the biting criticism of Dutch literature since the ‘90s – for instance in the publications Autobiography of a polemist and What we are for and against – and for their very accessible translations of less-than-accessible classics such as James Joyce’s Ulysses and Finnegan’s Wake. They recently published their first children’s book, De Mannen van Minsk, which was simultaneously premiered as a music theatre performance on the eve of the Children’s Book Week 2013. Now their children’s texts are to be set to music.

Team, Cast and Chorus

Musical Director 
Aldert Vermeulen
Stage Director 
Marcel Sijm
Klaus Bertisch
Decor design 
Ascon de Nijs
Costume design 
Esmee Thomassen
Lighting design 
Pelle Herfst
Stevie Ann
Madame Cortese 
Bauwien van der Meer
Marcel Reijans
Marc Pantus
Don Prudenzio 
Maciej Straburzynski
Ekaterina Levental
Mark Omvlee
Ruth Willemse
Selma Harkink
Wiard Witholt
Wiebe-Pier Cnossen
Anne Rose Lippens (violin), Rózsa Kremer (violin), Alix Rodenburg (violin), Christian Berg (violin), David Heyl, Sven Gee


Innovative and humorous
Director Marcel Sijm ensures that there’s plenty to laugh about. He is a true showman. His performances are innovative and humorous, with a major role for the staging concept. He enjoys combining various styles: he has made a ‘reality show’ of Mozart’s Così fan tutte for two rappers, two sopranos and two R&B singers. At DNO his scenic world premiere of Peter-Jan Wagemans’ opera Legende (2011) was a rousing success.



Netherlands Chamber Orchestra

The Netherlands’ finest orchestras are invited to accompany DNO productions. Our regular partner is the Netherlands Chamber Orchestra. Under former chief conductor Hartmut Haenchen the orchestra cemented its excellent reputation with Der Ring des Nibelungen. In 2014-2015: Gurre-Lieder, Lohengrin, La bohème and Macbeth (Netherlands Philharmonic Orchestra); Il viaggio a Reims and Die Zauberflöte (Netherlands Chamber Orchestra).




Every performance of National Opera & Ballet is preceded by an introductory talk. Learn more, enjoy more.

The introduction begins 45 minutes before curtain and is held in the foyer of the second balcony. The introduction is free of charge to everyone attending the performance, and amplification is used to enhance audibility. Several days prior to the premiere, the introduction will be made available digitally as a podcast. Check the performance page of the production in question to see if the podcast has already been made available.


    Tue 28 Jan De Groene Amsterdammer over Bindervoet en Henkes, 2002

    ‘…het duo infernal van de kleinschalige Nederlandse letteren…’