Madama Butterfly is a classic love story that never fails to move, a tragic romance that sweeps you along in the intensity of its action.
When an innocent young Geisha meets an American naval officer she falls instantly and deeply in love. Giving up her family and her faith, she risks all in marriage to the dashing Lieutenant Pinkerton. But her fragile happiness cannot last. Soon love turns to abandonment and betrayal, and Butterfly is forced to make one final, agonising sacrifice.
Bursting with exotic colour and memorable melodies, Puccini’s seductive score conceals a dramatic blade that cuts to the heart. Blending authentic Japanese music with luscious European harmonies and orchestration, the opera is an irresistible fusion of East and West.
Praised by critics as a ‘thoughtful, provocative staging’ and a ‘scathing study of exploitation’, Annilese Miskimmon’s production updates the action to the 1950s. This post-war setting brings to the fore the darker elements of Puccini’s story. Little wonder that this opera has inspired numerous contemporary adaptations and reimaginings, including the hit musical Miss Saigon.
David has vanquished the giant Goliath, but not everyone rejoices in his victory. Jealous of the young warrior, King Saul turns against him, descending into violent, destructive madness that forces his children to choose between loyalty and love, tearing both a family and a nation apart.
Handel’s vision of a Lear-like king is astonishing in its psychological complexity, offering a musical portrait of mental collapse few have since matched. Combined with thrilling choruses that exploit the virtuosic potential of their singers, exquisite arias and bold orchestration filled with unusual instruments, it creates a Biblical drama of truly Shakespearean scope.
Barrie Kosky’s blazingly original and visually spectacular staging of Handel’s oratorio pairs baroque music with contemporary choreography and lavish designs to create an enthralling theatrical fusion of old and new.
A rare opportunity to see Barber’s Pulitzer Prize-winning work – opera from the age of Hitchcock, with an atmospheric score and tense, psychological twists.
Abandoned by her lover Anatol, Vanessa retreats from the world, waiting and hoping with only her mother and her niece Erika for company. But when, 20 years later, Anatol’s handsome young son arrives unexpectedly, he shatters the calm of this shuttered household of women. Past and present love collides, and the aftershocks threaten to destroy them all.
An operatic thriller from the age of Hitchcock, Samuel Barber’s Pulitzer Prize-winning first opera boasts one of the 20th century’s most beautiful scores. Poised constantly on the edge of song, Vanessa unfolds in generous swathes of melody, rich in filmic strings and soaring brass, with echoes of Puccini, Berg and Strauss. It climaxes in a final quintet of Mozartean poignancy – one of the great ensembles of the contemporary repertoire.
Seldom performed in the UK, this is a rare opportunity to see Barber’s heart-breaking domestic drama. Olivier Award-winning director Keith Warner makes his much-anticipated Glyndebourne debut with this production, which promises to bring out the psychological tensions that sit just below the surface of this charged work.