Carmen is an opera by French composer Georges Bizet, based on a novella by Prosper Mérimée. It comprises a libretto written by Henri Meilhac and Ludovic Halévy. Upon premiering in Paris in 1875, the opera was met with shock and scandal. It went on to achieve monumental acclaim in the years following Bizet's death and is now one of the most performed operas in the classical canon. Arias such as 'Toreador Song' and 'Habanero' are famous when among those who've never seen the opera.
It is 1970s Spain, during Franco’s regime. The beautiful, fiery Carmen is desired by every man she meets. When her spurned lover – soldier Don José - turns violent, it's clear her longing for love has instead yielded jealousy and obsession.
Phenomenal mezzo Justina Gringytė (Hänsel und Gretel, Rigoletto) stars as Carmen. She is joined by Sean Panikkar as José and Nardus Williams as Micaëla in their ENO debuts. Baritone Ashley Riches (Le Nozze di Figaro) returns to ENO as bullfighter Escamillo.
Calixto Bieito directs. His previous credits include Don Giovanni and Die Entführung aus dem Serail. Bieito is the recipient of the European “pro cultura” prize by the European Cultural Foundation.
The conductor is ENO Mackerras Fellow Valentina Peleggi. Joan Anton Rechi is Associate Director, working alongside Revival Director Jamie Manton. Set design is by Alfons Flores, costume design is by Mercè Paloma and lighting design is by Bruno Poet. Christopher Cowell is the translator.
Carmen is a co-production with Den Norske Opera and Ballet. One of the most famous characters in all of opera, Carmen will wholly captivate you. Catch this sizzling show at the London Coliseum from 29 January 2020.
Please note that David Butt Philip will play the role of José on 25 and 27 February.
Recommended forThose who love the works of Bizet won’t want to miss this delicious new production of Carmen. Those who haven’t been to the opera before will find this show, with its famous arias and magnetic storyline, the perfect introduction to the genre.
Age Recommendations: Recommended 11+