Carmen, a new work for Rome Opera Ballet by Jiří Bubeníček will receive its world premiere this Saturday, 2 February, and runs until 10 February.
The company's director, Eleonora Abbagnato, said,
It's an honour for me to have a great artist, and fabulous dancer and now a young and successful choreographer like Bubeníček, to present his Carmen, a new creation with a new sets and costumes, having its world premiere here in Rome's Teatro Costanzi.
Interpreting these characters is a great opportunity for the growth of our company. Also, to have with us for two months a guest of the calibre of former New York City Ballet Principal Dancer, Amar Ramasar, is a true gift.
Ramasar will play Don José with company Principal Rebecca Bianchi as Carmen. Bianchi has already danced Carmen in Roland Petit's much-performed version, a role in which Abbagnato herself has often shone in at the Paris Opera Ballet.
The sets and costumes are by Gianni Carluccio and the costumes by fashion designer Anna Biagiotti.
Bubeníček has gone back to Prosper Mérimée's 1845 novella so there's no Escamillo but instead the character of Lucas, danced by Alessio Rezza, and also Garcia, Carmen's husband, played by Claudio Cocino.
The ballet is in two acts with music by Georges Bizet, but it also uses music by Manuel de Falla, Isaac Albéniz, Mario Castelnuovo-Tedesco as well as original music by Gabriele Bonolis who has also arranged the score.
Gianni Carluccio's sets allow for the story to be told in flashbacks as well as flashforwards, incorporating projections in his scenery.
A second cast sees Susanna Salvi, Claudio Cocino, Michele Satriano and Gaetan Vermeulen in the leading roles. The Rome Opera Theatre orchestra is conducted by Louis Lohraseb.
Ballet in two acts
Based on the novella by Prosper Mérimée
Manuel de Falla
Arrangements by Gabriele Bonolis
Conductor: Louis Lohraseb
Choreographer: Jiří Bubeniček
Set and lighting designer: Gianni Carluccio
Costume designer: Anna Biagiotti
Rebecca Bianchi 2, 3, 6, 7 (at 8pm), 9 (at 8pm) February / Susanna Salvi 5, 7 (at 11am), 8, 9 (3pm), 10 February
Amar Ramasar 2, 3, 6, 7 (at 8pm), 9 (at 8pm) February / Claudio Cocino 5, 7 (at 11am), 8, 9 (3pm), 10 February
Alessio Rezza 2, 3, 6, 7 (at 8pm), 9 (at 8pm) February / Michele Satriano 5, 7 (at 11am), 8, 9 (3pm), 10 February
Claudio Cocino 2, 3, 6, 7 (at 8pm), 9 (at 8pm) February / Gaetan Vermeulen 5, 7 (at 11am), 8, 9 (3pm), 10 February
World premiere: 2 February 2019, 8pm.
Graham Spicer is a writer, director and photographer in Milan, blogging (under the name ‘Gramilano') about dance, opera, music and photography for people “who are a bit like me and like some of the things I like”. He was a regular columnist for Opera Now magazine and wrote for the BBC until transferring to Italy.
His scribblings have appeared in various publications from Woman's Weekly to Gay Times, and he wrote the ‘Danza in Italia' column for Dancing Times magazine.