Carmen at the New Theatre Oxford

A review by: Nicholas Newman 16 February 2013     For those looking for a hot blooded adventure

carmenEllen Kent’s production of Bizet’s Carmen at Oxford’s New Theatre was very gripping at times.

Carmen is about a fiery passionate Spanish gypsy girl who seduces Don José, a naive the soldier in the town of Granada in the 1830s. As a result, Don José abandons his childhood sweetheart and deserts the army. Unfortunately for Don José life as a smuggler with Carmen fails to meet its promise as Carmen heartlessly abandons him for Escamillo, a toreador.

In a sense this production of Carmen, has a degree of brutality and violence mixed
in with erotic passion between the two main characters Carmen and Don José.
Nadezdha Stoianova, who plays Carmen embodies in her role, a flashing defiance,
which at the same time glows with warmth and erotic sensuality. As for Don José,
portrayed by Sorin Lupu, one can truly appreciate the characters’ unresolved
anxiety and self-doubt. Sorin sang with lean strength and striving. At times the
scenes between Carmen and Don José holds were electric and full of toxic
chemistry.

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