Carmen Thursday 21 February – Sunday 3 March 2013


From the very first note of the much-loved overture to the final tragic chords, the very essence of Spain is brought to life in this acclaimed in-the-round production of the world’s most popular opera. The dusty atmosphere of the town square, the cool night air of the smugglers’ mountain hideout and the festivities outside the bullring in Seville are all vividly recreated in this powerful tale of lust, superstition and murder which slowly unravels with fatal consequences.

Carmen, a fiery gypsy girl, is arrested for attacking a fellow worker in the cigarette factory but manages to persuade her guard, Don José, to release her on the promise of love. Never satisfied with the love of one man alone, Carmen quickly casts aside the hapless Don José in favour of the glamorous toreador, Escamillo. Consumed by passion and jealousy, Don José pursues Carmen back to Seville leading to the inevitable and tragic conclusion.

Bizet’s rich and timeless score contains some of opera’s finest arias and best-loved music. Escamillo’s rousing Song of the Toreador, Carmen’s bewitching Seguidilla and tantalizing Habanera and Don José’s heartfelt Flower Song never fail to captivate, seducing you with the sensual music and sultry rhythms of Spain.

Following its highly acclaimed seasons in 2002, 2005 and 2009, this spectacular in-the-round production returns to the Royal Albert Hall for a strictly limited season of just 14 performances.

David Freeman director
David Roger set & costume designer
Gareth Hancock musical director
Robert North choreographer
Andrew Bridge lighting desginer
Bobby Aitken sound designer
Amanda Holden English translation

Carmen will be sung in English by two superb casts including:
Cristina Nassif and Antonia Sotgiu – Carmen
Noah Stewart and Paul Charles Clarke – Don José
Elizabeth Atherton and Natasha Jouhl – Micaela
Daniel Grice and Kevin Greenlaw – Escamillo