CARMEN by Piazza Vittorio Orchestra

The Stuff of Dreams


The choir sings suspended in the air as if it were in the afterlife. It observs the passage on earth of a bizarre caravan of nomads coming from various parts of the world and who, from Rajasthan, is now on the way to Spain. The story of our Carmen develops among these people and the chorus knows it very well. The choir has already seen the same story thousands of times, in many places of the world, in that precise moment and among those people. But this time, it decides to be more than a spectator becoming instead active part of the story. Sometimes it replaces the characters,  sometimes it suggests them how to act, what to say, other times it even descends on earth becoming a protagonist itself. Hence, the choir has the dual function of narrator and voice of conscience, a sort of union between a greek chorus and a talking cricket.

At the same time on earth, the human tragedy of a young man takes place. He has lost his head for a beautiful and seductive woman older than him, who loves freedom more than love itself.

The idea is to tell a story which is different from the original libretto of Carmen, not in the synopsis but in the psychology and characterization of the characters. We are accustomed to the idea of Don José as a born loser. His life is inconclusive, he has a past as a compulsive gambler, then he changed his plans: he enlisted, he moved to another city, he misses his homeland and his mother, he feels sad. He is quarrelsome and a bit pathetic (in the sense of moving when there is a great performer, or almost ridiculous when the interpreter is not that good). Carmen represents the unscrupulous sensuality, the shameless beauty, the female par excellence, able to make fool of all men. We want to tell the other faces of these two characters. We want to tell a love story.

After the acclaimed version of The Magic Flute (2009), the Orchestra di Piazza Vittorio revisits Carmen in collaboration with the Opera Theatre of Saint-Étienne.


Isabella Cocuzza and Arturo Paglia present
A production by LES NUITS DE FOURVIÈRE / Département du Rhône
In co-production with the Opéra Théâtre de Saint-Étienne
Executive Producer Paco Cinematografica Srl in collaboration with Vagabundos

Orchestra di Piazza Vittorio 

Lyric Choir of Saint Etienne Loire
Youth Orchestra of the Teatro dell’Opera di Roma
Pianist and conductor Leandro Piccioni
Directed by Mario Tronco

Artistic Cast:

Cristina Zavalloni
Sanjay Khan
Elsa Birge

Technical Cast:

Choreography by Giorgio Rossi

Scenography by Lino Fiorito

Assistant Director Daniele Spanò

Technical Director Daniele Davino

Production Manager Francesca Daccico