Mezzo-soprano Daniela Mack, who opened Opera Philadelphia’s 2017-2018 season in the title role of the new opera Elizabeth Cree, returns this spring. She will close out the season in the title role of one of the world’s most popular operas, Bizet’s masterpiece, Carmen. Directed by Paul Curran, who led 2015’s acclaimed La traviata, this new production of Carmen will run at the Academy of Music for five performances, April 27 to May 6, 2018.
Carmen is an unforgettable story of runaway passions and dire consequences. Everyone is drawn to Carmen, an irresistible Spanish gypsy – except Corporal Don José. But even he soon succumbs to her seduction, fleeing a life in the military to join the gypsy world, all in Carmen’s name. When the famous bullfighter Escamillo begins to win her affection, however, a dangerous love triangle grows. Micaëla, Don José’s hometown sweetheart, attempts to wrest him from Carmen’s grasp, but to no avail – fate has already dealt its hand.
Heading a stellar cast is Daniela Mack, as the iconic Carmen. Recent Curtis Institute of Music graduate Evan LeRoy Johnson is Don José, alongside baritone Adrian Timpau, in his company debut, as the bullfighter, Escamillo. Soprano Kirsten MacKinnon sings the role of Micaëla. Johnathan McCullough, who performed multiple roles in Elizabeth Cree, returns as Moralès, with South African bass-baritone Musa Ngqungwana, as Zuniga.
Curtis soprano Emily Pogorelc, winner of the Ginette Theano prize for most promising talent at the 2018 Glyndbourne Opera Cup, sings the role of Frasquita, with Opera Philadelphia Emerging Artist Anastasiia Sodorova as Mercédès. Daniel Taylor (Le Remendado) and Doğukan Kuran (Le Dancaïre) round out the cast led by director Paul Curran (La traviata) and conductor Yves Abel, in his company debut leading the Opera Philadelphia Orchestra.