Carmen at the ENO’s London Coliseum

A passionate tale of lust, seduction and betrayal, no other opera boasts as popular a following as Bizet’s Carmen. Set during the dying days of Franco’s Spain, Calixto Bieito’s acclaimed production of this must see opera has been enjoyed by audiences across Europe.

Bizet’s dazzling score evokes all the sounds and sizzling atmosphere of Spain through some of the Opera’s most famous melodies, from Carmen’s seductive “Habanera” to the Toreador’s stirring parade. Sensational mezzo-soprano Justina Gringyte leads the cast, alongside the internationally acclaimed tenor Eric Cutler as Jose, ENO Harewood Artisit Eleanor Dennis as Micaela and Leigh Melrose as the toreador Escamillo. Returning to the Coliseum to conduct this stunning production is Sir Richard Armstrong.


Don Jose, a northerner of a respectable family, was studying for the priesthood. He killed a man after a game of cards, and fled south to join the army. His mother and Micaela, an orphan girl whom she wishes her son to marry, follow him to the south and set up home in a village outside the town where Don Jose’s regiment is posted.


The cast includes Justina Gringyte, Eric Cutler, Eleanor Dennis, Leigh Melrose, Rhian Lois, Clare Presland, George Humphreys, Geoffrey Dolton, Alun Rhys-Jenkins and Graeme Danby


Directed by Calixto Bieito with set design by Alfons Flores, costume design by Mercè Paloma, lighting design by Bruno Poet and translation by Christopher Cowell.


★★★★ ‘Justina Gringyte… oozes sexual allure in the title role’ Evening Standard

★★★★ A dynamic staging of Bizet’s passionate tale of love, lust and betrayal. ‘Intelligent, fascinating music theatre’ The Guardian