8:00 pm Friday, May 19, 2017
3:00 pm Sunday, May 21, 2017
Pre-performance Talk Opera Preludes with Dr. Sam Dorf one hour before performances in the Mead Theatre
Pre-performance Opera Bites before performances in the Wintergarden
A DPAA SIGNATURE EVENT
Music by GEORGES BIZET Libretto by HENRI MEILHAC and LUDOVIC HALÉVY
NEAL GITTLEMAN conductor WEBSITE THOMAS BANKSTON opera artistic director WEBSITE KAREN RUSSO BURKE choreographer WEBSITE FENLON LAMB stage director WEBSITE AUDREY BABCOCK* mezzo-soprano – Carmen WEBSITE DOMINIC ARMSTRONG tenor – Don José WEBSITE DEBORAH SELIG soprano – Micaëla WEBSITE NATHAN STARK bass – Escamillo WEBSITE VINCENT GRANA* bass-baritone – Zuniga WEBSITE CHELSEA FRIEDLANDER soprano – Frasquita WEBSITE ELIZABETH FREY* mezzo-soprano – Mercédès WEBSITE BRIAN SKOOG* tenor – Remendado WEBSITE TYLER ALESSI* baritone – Dancaïro
ALEXANDER HARPER* baritone – Moralès
*Dayton Opera debut
IN FRENCH WITH ENGLISH SURTITLES
DAYTON OPERA THOMAS BANKSTON artistic director, event producing director DAYTON PHILHARMONIC NEAL GITTLEMAN artistic director, conductor
DAYTON OPERA CHORUS JEFFREY POWELL chorus master
DAYTON BALLET KAREN RUSSO BURKE artistic director, choreographer
KETTERING CHILDREN'S CHOIR MARK JAUSS, JR. Concert Choir Director; BRUCE SWANK Chorale Choir Director
Carmen’s seductive, she’s elusive, she’s a danger to your heart. And best of all, she’s irresistibly tuneful.
Poor Don José. Poised to marry Micaela, the hometown “good girl” whom his mother approves, he topples like a giant oak in a storm when the fiery gypsy sets her laser sights on the hapless corporal. Don José doesn’t give in without a struggle, and neither does pure-hearted Micaela, who dares to search for her love in the mountainous gypsy smugglers’ lair. But who can resist Carmen’s seductive Seguidilla or her inviting, tempestuous Habanera? Certainly not Don José, and definitely not the generations of audiences who have made Georges Bizet’s masterpiece one of the most frequently performed operas ever.
Alas, what Carmen boasts in allure and vocal splendor, she lacks in attention span, and Don José soon finds his once-comfortable world quickly imploding. He risks everything for the temperamental gypsy—his military career, his former sweetheart, even a chance to see his dying mother. And for what? Fleeting passion in the midst of a smuggling ring he was supposed to police. His doom is set when in swaggers his rival, the virile baritone Escamillo, a bullfighter. Well-equipped with the glamour of the bullring and the irresistible Toreador Song, Escamillo snatches the prize from the devastated tenor, Don José. Despite fateful warnings from a reading of the cards, Carmen never veers from her self-determined path to destruction. She must remain forever free! She will pay for her freedom with her life.
Don’t miss the opera that shocked Paris with its frankness and made Bizet’s enduring fame.