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DON GIOVANNI

Sexual intrigue, jealousy, wit, anger… and retribution! The new Royal Opera Season begins with Mozart’s engaging masterpiece, which follows Don Giovanni, the women he serially seduces, and the vengeance that finally catches up with him. The opera is renowned for its ever-shifting portrayals of complex characters, fast-moving action and mix of the comic and the heartfelt. A cast of international singers – both familiar and making Royal Opera debuts – under conductor Hartmut Haenchen perform the glorious arias and ensembles of this opera favourite.

DON PASQUALE

Royal Opera favourite Bryn Terfel heads the cast for this new production of Donizetti’s comedy of domestic drama across two generations. The witty story of a middle-aged man whose supposed young wife runs rings around him – with her own ulterior romantic purpose in mind – has long delighted and surprised audiences, not least as presented with the sparkle of its music and the virtuoso skill of its performers. Damiano Michieletto’s exhilarating production shows how contemporary the characters still are and how immediate and touching the story remains.

COPPÉLIA

A classic returns to The Royal Ballet repertory with Ninette de Valois’ charming and funny Coppélia – a story of love, mischief and mechanical dolls. The intricate choreography is set to Delibes’ delightful score and shows off the technical precision and comedic timing of the whole Company. Osbert Lancaster’s designs bring a colourful storybook world to life in this Christmas treat for the whole family.

THE SLEEPING BEAUTY

This production of The Sleeping Beauty has been delighting audiences in Covent Garden since 1946. A classic of Russian ballet, it established The Royal Ballet both in its new home after World War II and as a world-class company. Sixty years later, in 2006, the original staging was revived, returning Oliver Messel’s wonderful designs and glittering costumes to the stage. Pyotr Il’yich Tchaikovsky’s enchanting score and Marius Petipa’s original choreography beautifully combine with sections created for The Royal Ballet by Frederick Ashton, Anthony Dowell and Christopher Wheeldon. This ballet is sure to cast its spell over anyone who sees it.

LA BOHÈME

Puccini’s opera of young love in 19th-century Paris is packed with beautiful music, including lyrical arias, celebratory choruses for Act II’s evocation of Christmas Eve in the Latin Quarter and a poignant final scene over which the composer himself wept. Richard Jones’s character-led production perfectly captures La bohème’s mixture of comedy, romance and tragedy, with striking designs by Stewart Laing. The cast features some of the greatest interpreters of Puccini’s bohemian lovers performing today, as well as former members of The Royal Opera’s Jette Parker Young Artists Programme.

MARSTON & SCARTLETT WORLD PREMIERES

Choreographer Cathy Marston is previously an Associate Artist of the Royal Opera House and Director of Bern Ballett, and much in demand internationally. The inspiration for her first work for The Royal Ballet Main Stage is the momentous life and career of the cellist Jacqueline du Pré. A new work by Liam Scarlett, The Royal Ballet’s Artist in Residence, provides the second part of the programme.

ELEKTRA

Strauss’s thrilling and audacious adaptation of Greek tragedy receives a new staging by the award-winning director Christof Loy. This uncompromising opera, about a daughter intent on bloody revenge and a mother driven to madness, has provoked critics to lively debate and both shocked and excited audiences since its 1909 premiere. Antonio Pappano conducts music that combines violence with moments of exquisite tenderness in his first Strauss interpretation for The Royal Opera since 2002. The outstanding cast includes Nina Stemme (Brünnhilde in last Season’s Der Ring des Nibelungen) in the title role, and Karita Mattila in her role debut as the haunted queen Klytämnestra.