It must have been one of the most haunted scenes of the French Revolution: On July 17, 1794, 16 nuns of the Carmelite order were executed - on the pretext that they had instigated a counter-revolutionary conspiracy. Silence reigned on the crowded Place du Trone in Paris. There was no shouting, yelling or drumming. Only the singing of the "Laudate Dominum omnes gentes" by the sisters, who climbed the scaffold one after the other, became quieter with each impact of the baton until the last voice had died out. Poulenc's opera "Dialogues des Carmélites" based on the novella by Gertrud von le Fort and the stage play by Georges Bernanos goes far beyond this event. The mysterious essence of the invented character Blanche de la Force is at the center of the composer's only full-length opera, which premiered in Milan in 1957. Due to its religious subject matter, the work, which deals with human fear and divine grace, occupies a special position in 20th-century music theatre. The sixteen scenes of the opera are reflections: reflection on life, knowledge of the truth, human borderline experience and fulfillment in faith.