Sung in French with English titlesMusic Georges Bizet
Libretto Henri Meilhac and Ludovic Halévy
First performance Paris, 1875
Bizet’s masterpiece of sexual obsession and self-destruction is enduringly popular for many reasons, not the least of which is its brilliantly characterful score.
It’s the story of a woman on the margins of society, driven by a fierce, uncompromising desire for personal liberty, and of a man who, in the grip of sexual obsession, tries to own her.
The opera’s frank sensuality, stark emotional realism and brutal violence outraged many of its first audiences, and it was widely condemned for its perceived immorality. Almost 150 years later, Carmen presents new challenges to contemporary sensibilities, whilst Bizet’s music – overflowing with passion, colour, energy and unforgettable melody – continues to mesmerise.
Garry Walker conducts his first production as Opera North’s Music Director, and Edward Dick directs our first Carmen in ten years following his triumphant Tosca for the Company in 2018.
‘The production’s real strengths … lie in Dick’s understanding of the psychological dynamics between the protagonists … It’s compelling stuff, disquieting, creepy and exciting in equal measure.’ Tim Ashley, The Guardian, on Tosca, 2018.
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