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   February 27
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Arts Calendar / December 13 / Opera
16:00 Carmen
Opera by George Bizet. 130 min. Stage Director – Dmitry Bertman. Musical Director – Kirill Tikhonov. The play is awarded “The Golden Mask” Russian National Theatre Award in two categories: “Best director’s work of musical theatre” and “Best actress of musical theatre” (1998). The Opera “Carmen” is regarded the climax of the creative works of the French composer George Bizet and one of the best examples of the genre of opera. Nowdays it is hard to believe that its premiere on the stage of Opera Comique in Paris on March, 2, 1875 failed, and a scandal around it was huge… Now we cannot imagine our world without bright, passionate, exciting melodies of Bizet, and the role of Carmen lead to glory so many female singers. In Helikon-Opera the production has immediately become a sensation – it exploded the music world by the courage of the version and the heat of the action. Dmitry Bertman defined the genre of his production as a “modern criminal drama for adults only”. But the most important reasons of the success of the production became not the criminal subject and extravaganza of the characters, but the emotional and expressive atmosphere, taking the audience into the abyss of passions. One should add the highest professionalism and mastery of details of the mise-EN-scenes to the fast actions on stage. Bizet’s “Carmen” in Helikon looks like the most beloved production of the muscovites and the guests of Moscow.
Helikon Opera 
19:00 La Traviata
Opera in three acts by Giuseppe Verdi. 160 min (with one intermission) Libretto by Francesco Maria Piave based on "La Dame aux camélias." Music Director: Laurent Campellone. Stage Director: Francesca Zambello. Sung in Italian with Russian surtitles. During Verdi’s lifetime La Traviata was one of the most frequently performed of all operas, and it has continued to be through to the present. The opera was originally titled Violetta, after the main character. It was first performed on 6 March 1853 at the La Fenice opera house in Venice. Piave and Verdi wanted to follow Dumas in giving the opera a contemporary setting, but the authorities at La Fenice insisted that it be set in the past, "c. 1700". It was not until the 1880s that the composer's and librettist's original wishes were carried out and "realistic" productions were staged. La Traviata is the story of a lively Parisian courtesan who gives up the man she loves to save his family’s reputation. Perhaps this is the greatest theme of La Traviata; self-sacrifice. The opera is a touching story, not just because it is a story people can believe in, but because it is a story people want to believe in. It encourages the ideal that it is possible to experience the joy of a pure, redemptive love. The story shows that it is possible – no matter what hurt and offence has been caused – to right wrongs by sacrifice to the greatest good.
Bolshoi Theater 
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