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Ended 27 May 2017 after 15 days

While some details still need sharpening, Nicholas Hytner's Don Carlo shows the Royal Opera at its best

The Telegraph

Closed 27 May 2017

Nicholas Hytner's hit production

Bryan Hymel and Krassimira Stoyanova lead Nicholas Hytner's celebrated production of Verdi's opera about courtly intrigue and love. Set in Inquisition-era Spain, this soaring operatic tragedy features some of opera's most well-developed and complex characters, including two of classical theatre's most celebrated heroines. First performed at the Paris Opera in 1867, Verdi's Don Carlo has undergone various incarnations before Hytner's bold interpretation premiered in 2008 at the Royal Opera House, which has since been seen overseas at New York's iconic Metropolitan Opera House.

What is it about?

Love is in the air when Elizabeth of Valois is betrothed to prince Don Carlos of Spain, in order to secure lasting peace between their two countries. Falling in love almost instantly, they spend cloudless days in happy esctacs; however their bliss is short-lived when the treaty is amended, and she must marry Carlos' father instead. Disaster.

Instead of his wife, Elizabeth is now Carlos's step-mother and cannot shake her love for him; however, she is true to her husband and tries to put the prince off. The sinisters Grand Inquisitor demands that King Philip has Carlos executed to secure the future of the country, however the headstrong prince decides to escape. Meeting Elizabeth one last time, they have a passionate goodbye - unfortunately it seems that the Inquisitor was waiting for them in the shadows all along.

Additional Information


Opening night: 12 May 2017

Closing night: 27 May 2017


Suitable for ages 12+

Run time

Four hours 30 minutes, including two intervals.

And before you stop reading

Sung in Italian with English surtitles.

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