Bizet's 'Carmen' at Kentish Opera,
enjoyed by PIPPA HARE
George Bizet's opera Carmen was first staged in Paris in 1875. The libretto was written by Henri Meilhac and Ludovic Halévy, an Opéra Comique with a tragic story and a tragic ending which was based on a novel of the same name by Prosper Merimée and generally believed to have been influenced by Pushkin's poem The Gypsies, originally written in Russian.
At the time Carmen was first performed, the Opéra Comique was doing so badly that they were giving tickets away in an attempt to boost sales. Carmen was nearly withdrawn after its fifth performance, but in the end it ran for forty eight.
Only two months after the first night of Carmen, which was denounced by most of the critics, Bizet died of a heart attack and never knew what a success his opera would subsequently become...
Copyright © 11 July 2010