The highly acclaimed Russian State Ballet & Opera House returns to Lincolnshire next week with one of the most popular operas of them all – Carmen.
With it’s heady mix of love, treachery, fierce passion and betrayal, all held together by some of composer Georges Bizet’s most memorable melodies, Carmen has been loved around the world favour all over the world almost since its first performance in 1875.
And Lincolnshire audiences can feel it for themselves when it comes to the Baths Hall in Scunthorpe on Thursday, September 15.
Set in 19th Century Seville, Carmen tells the story of the downfall of Don José, a naïve soldier who is seduced by Carmen, a free-spirited femme fatale.
José abandons his childhood sweetheart and deserts from his military duties, yet loses Carmen’s love to the glamorous toreador Escamillo.
The music of Carmen has been widely acclaimed for its brilliance of melody, harmony, atmosphere and orchestration, and for the skill with which Bizet represented, musically, the emotions and suffering of his characters.
The Toreador Song, in particular, is among the best known of all operatic arias while the rich and colourful vigour of the gypsies’ scenes have also become synonymous with what makes Carmen so popular.
Alexej Ignatow, the company’s producer, said: If you’ve never tried opera before, then this piece, with its colourful costumes, exquisite singing and wonderful tunes, all played by a 30-piece orchestra, is a must-see opera production for everyone.”
Their Baths Hall appearance is one of more than 100 the company are making around the UK this year, performing Carmen or Puccini’s classic Madam Butterfly.
Alexej continued: “The Russian State Ballet and Opera House has been presenting ballets and operas to huge audiences for more than 14 years.
“Unlike many other companies that travel to Europe with ballet and opera productions, we only work with established theatres in the Russian Federation.
“These theatres have many years of experience and, most importantly, they have an established stable of directors and conductors who have graduated from the best artistic institutions in Russia and the former Soviet Union.
“We are constantly on the lookout for new challenges and to ensure that our opera and ballet audience get a chance to experience a wide spectrum of various classic pieces.
“Opera and ballet is often thought to be difficult and elitist, but this is not so.
“Both forms are timeless and, like any art, they need to be presented in an accessible and attractive way to the audience.
“This is why we feel it is so important to present our productions in a classical, traditional style that is familiar to all.
“With extensive national tours, we are able to offer regional audience an unforgettable experience at a fraction of the price charged by major theatres without sacrificing quality.
“So, it is very close to my heart to continue working with national theatres to deliver top quality productions every year and making new converts wherever we go.
“No experience is needed to enjoy these classics, the set and costumes, an informative programme and surtitles (for opera) make the productions easy to follow and enjoy.”
The Baths Hall performance starts at 7.30pm, tickets are £29.50 from the box office on 0844 8542776 or www.bathshall.co.uk