Study the Operas—Carmen–The Gypsy

Recommended recordings of The Magic Flute from Opera Theater’s long-time board member, Dr. Jerry Clack. [Click the cover art to view item in Amazon's store.]


studycarmen1“The role fits Callas to a T, Georges Prêtre does a wonderful job conducting the Orchestre du Théâtre National de l’Opéra de Paris, and Gedda is excellent. But it is Callas’ ability to get into the skin of the character and radiate Carmen’s sexuality and unpredictability, as well as her despair and desperation, that makes this EMI Classics version, remastered from the original 1964 recording, so special.”




studycarmen2“Tatiana Troyanos was reportedly never comfortable on stage as Carmen, but she sings it ravishingly well in this 1975 Decca recording with the London Philharmonic, in good voice and at home with the character. Placido Domingo, seemingly the only Don José of our era, gives one of his best accounts of the role; Dame Kiri Te Kanawa sings beautifully as Micaëla, and Jose van Dam’s Escamillo offers just the right blend of macho swagger. The dialogue is unusually well done, and Georg Solti’s conducting, though lacking some Gaelic wit, gets the serious parts spot-on.” –Sarah Bryan Miller 




studycarmen3“This 2010 live HD broadcast from the Metropolitan Opera features Elina Garanca as Carmen, replacing Angela Gheorghiu who dropped out due to her much publicized split with her husband Roberto Alagna, the Don Jose of this recording.  In addition, on the day of the broadcast, Mariusz Kwiecien, the original Escamillo cancelled, so Teddy Tahu-Rhodes stepped in as his replacement.  Despite the cast shuffling, the HD broadcast that is now on DVD is a remarkably cohesive performance led by the exciting young Canadian conductor, Yannick Nézet-Séguin.”







Online resources

Carmen Wikipedia page

Hear Opera Theater Founder, Mildred Miller Posvar, sing Carmen excerpts with Arthur Fiedler and the Boston Pops Orchestra.


Suggested reading

George Bizet: Carmen (Cambridge Opera Handbooks), Susan McClary

Carmen, Prosper Mérimée