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Photo Flash: CARMEN Opens at the Met

 

Bizet's Carmen will return to the Metropolitan Opera on November 4 in Richard Eyre's critically acclaimed production, featuring star mezzo-soprano El?na Garan?a as the alluring Gypsy seductress; rising tenor Brandon Jovanovich as her lover and victim, Don José; Nicole Cabell as the innocent Micaëla; and John Relyea, singing the toreador Escamillo for the first time at the Met. English National Opera Music Director Edward Gardner, who is making his Met debut, will conduct all Carmen performances this season.

Richard Eyre's production of Carmen earned widespread praise when it premiered at the Met last season. The New York Times admired Eyre's ability to "uncover the rawness and daring at the opera's core." Critics were similarly enthusiastic about El?na Garan?a's performance in the title role, with New York Magazine calling her "the most convincing Carmen in a long time...her voice glides with liquid smoothness from the upper range down to the chesty low tones" and the Times finding her portrayal "captivating...nuanced, sexy, and cagey."

On January 5, 26-year-old Georgian mezzo-soprano Anita Rachvelishvili, who made a high-profile debut in Carmen at La Scala last year, will make her Met debut in the title role. The Times hailed her La Scala debut as "a triumph...whenever Ms. Rachvelishvili tossed her long dark locks, smitten Spanish soldiers fell onstage like dominoes." She will sing opposite Roberto Alagna, whose Don José in the production's premiere last season earned considerable critical praise. Rachvelishvili and Alagna will be joined by two singers making their Met role debuts: Genia Kühmeier as Micaëla and Tony Award winner Paulo Szot as Escamillo.

Carmen features sets and costumes by Rob Howell, lighting design by Peter Mumford, and choreography by Christopher Wheeldon. Viktoria Vizin will sing the role of Carmen on December 9 and Hei-Kyung Hong will sing Micaëla on December 4 and 9.

Live Broadcasts Around the World
Carmen will be experienced by millions of people around the world this season on the radio and on the internet, through distribution platforms the Met has established with various media partners.
The November 4 opening performance will be broadcast live on Metropolitan Opera Radio on SIRIUS channel 78 and XM channel 79, as will the performances on November 8, 16, 24, 30, and January 13.


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