Royal Opera House

2.5/5 based on 2 reviews (read reviews)
  • Booking until: Friday, 31 May 2024
  • Running time: 3hr 10min. Incl. 1 interval.
Carmen photos
Carmen description

Carmen at the Royal Opera House

Whether you've seen the opera before or never heard of it, you'll adore this fresh new production in all its non-traditional glory. Carmen is sung in French with English surtitles and it's on stage at the Royal Opera House.

What's the story behind Carmen?

Carmen is probably Bizet's best-known opera. It's also one of the world's most famous operas of all, with songs like the Habanera and the Toreador Song fixed in people's consciousness. You might not think you know the music but as soon as you hear it, you realise you do.

The original premiere version with its dramatic blend of passion, sensuality and violence was too much for audiences and it flopped spectacularly back in 1875, hated by the critics. Bizet, who died shortly afterwards, never knew just how popular his opera would become. So this one's for him. Bizet we salute you, and thank you.

About Carmen

What's the story? When the young soldier Don José, who wants to marry a girl from his home village, meets the rebellious, fiery Carmen, he falls deeply in lust and abandons his old love. Having sacrificed everything to be with her, when Carmen gets bored and falls in love with Escamillo, Don José tracks Carmen down and kills her.

Aigul Akmetshina and Vasilisa Berzhanskaya share the title role in Damiano Michieletto's searing new production of Bizet's ever-popular opera. It has been given a fresh outlook thanks to Aussie director Barrie Kosky's powerfully physical production, originally created for Frankfurt Opera.

Kosky just happens to be one of the world's most desired opera directors, famed for his exceptional 2016 Royal Opera debut, Shostakovich's The Nose. His innovative version of Carmen is unexpected, including music written by Bizet but seldom heard, giving a new voice to the opera's always-fascinating central character, Carmen herself.

Don Jose is played by Piotr Beczala and Escamillo by Kostas Smoriginas. Micaela is played by Olga Kulchynska and Zuniga by Blaise Malaba. Frasquita is Sarah Dufresne and Mercedes is Gabrielė Kupšytė. Dan Cairo is played by Pierre Doyen, Remendado by Vincent Ordonneau and Morales by Grisha Martirosyan. Your chorus is the Royal Opera Chorus and the orchestra is the Orchestra of the Royal Opera House.

The Director is Damiano Michieletto and the Set Designer is Paolo Fantin. Costume Design comes from Carla Teti and the Lighting Designer is Alessandro Carletti. Dramaturg is by Elisa Zaninotto.

Buy tickets for Carmen

Buy tickets for Carmen from us and enjoy simple, efficient service. We'll email your e-tickets to you, the simplest and quickest way to enjoy the best of theatre.

Playing at Royal Opera House

Bow Street, London, WC2E 9DD GB (venue info)

Royal Opera House Directions

Age restrictions

Ages 8+.

Important information

This production contains themes of a sexual nature and moderate violence. Sung in French with English surtitles.

Performance Times
Mon - -
Tue - 19:00
Wed 12:00 -
Thu - -
Fri - 19:00
Sat - 19:00
Sun - -