Orphée aux enfers (the original French title) is a comic opera first performed in 1858 Paris. Combining music by Jacques Offenbach and words by Ludovic Halévy and Hector Crémieux, the piece skewers the Greek myth of Orpheus and Eurydice. The famous ‘Galop Infernal’ (aka the ‘Can-can’) originates from Offenbach’s score, and the show has been treated to a plethora of revivals, many featuring translations, across the globe.
Who needs Heaven when Hell is so much fun? After Eurydice’s marriage to Orpheus ends in tragedy, she is fooled into taking Pluto, king of the Underworld, as her lover. If Orpheus is to win her back, he must enlist the help of a posse of magnificent but frustratingly blasé gods.
Ed Lyon and Claudia Boyle star as Orpheus and Eurydice, alongside Alan Oke as John Styx and Sir Willard White in the part of Jupiter. They are joined by ENO Harewood Artists Idunnu Münch and Alex Otterburn as well as ENO Harewood Artist alumnus Mary Bevan. ENO’s former Music Director Sian Edwards conducts.
Emma Rice is the Artistic Director of theatre company Wise Children, which she set up in 2018. Her directing credits include Brief Encounter, Cymbeline and Wise Children.
Orpheus in the Underworld is the glittering soiree you always wanted to be invited to. Put on your party hat and step into Emma Rice’s world at the London Coliseum from 5 October 2019.
Recommended forIf you loved Emma Rice’s work for Kneehigh or for her company Wise Children, you won’t want to miss Orpheus in the Underworld, which boasts all her signature humour and playfulness. Fans of ENO’s grand productions will find the 2019/20 season does not disappoint.
Age Recommendations: No under 5s