The Adelaide Festival has announced that the operatic centerpiece for its 2020 program will be Romeo Castellucci’s revelatory staging of Mozart’s Requiem, which dazzled audiences and critics when it premiered at the Festival International d’Art Lyrique d’Aix-en-Provence in France earlier this month.

Mozart's Requiem, Adelaide Festival Romeo Castellucci’s Requiemat the Festival International d’Art Lyrique d’Aix-en-Provence. Photograph © Pascal Victor/ArtComPress

Mozart’s final work, which he was still completing when he died, has been transformed by the renowned, radical director into a powerful stage production, hailed by French newspaper Le Figaroas “a splendid meditation of the beauty of the world and its disintegration”. Other critics also sang its praises. “The mass of the dead becomes an ode to life,” said Libération. Le Pointdescribed the production as “staggering”, while Die Deutsche Bühnesaid: “With Mozart’s Requiem, Romeo Castellucci has become a theatrical creative genius”.

Rachel Healy and Neil Armfield, the Joint Artistic Directors of the Adelaide Festival, were in Aix-en-Provence for the premiere. “We went to the dress rehearsal in a kind of jet-lagged funk and then, of course, we were at the opening as well the next day. It was so moving, the...