The Royal Opera House is delighted to announce that its next Cinema Season will comprise an astonishing 13 productions, eight of which will be broadcast to screens across the globe. The programme offers audiences the best seat in the house – sharing the joy of live performance, and the beauty of world class art, with cinema goers in more than 50 countries around the world.
The Season begins in September when Music Director of The Royal Opera Antonio Pappano partners with Barrie Kosky for the first time to conduct a bold new imagining of Wagner's first chapter of the Ring cycle, Das Rheingold. The production – a massive undertaking for any opera house – is sung by an outstanding cast that includes Christopher Maltman as Wotan and Christopher Purves as Alberich. It will be broadcast live to cinemas across the world on Wednesday 20 September 2023.
Over autumn, the Cinema Season includes a live broadcast of Gaetano Donizetti’s L’elisir d’amour – starring Nadine Sierra, Liparit Avetisyan and Bryn Terfel – and of Carlos Acosta’s vibrant production of Don Quixote for The Royal Ballet, showcasing a Company dancing at its peak. In the run up to Christmas, The Nutcracker will reach audiences across the globe, offering sweeping snowscapes, magical stagecraft and a showstopping series of dances performed in the dream-like Kingdom of Sweets.
The new year kicks off with a special screening of Rusalka, filmed in London in early 2023. Asmik Grigorian performs the title role, joining British artists Sarah Connolly, David Butt Philip, Aleksei Isaev and Emma Bell in a contemporary re-imagining of Dvořák’s lyric fairy tale, co-created by Natalie Abrahami and Ann Yee, conducted by Semyon Bychkov.
Following that are live broadcasts of two of the Royal Opera House’s most beloved productions: Kenneth MacMillan’s Manon in February 2024, celebrating its 50th anniversary; and Moshe Leiser’s and Patrice Caurier’s Madama Butterfly in March 2024, offering an opportunity to hear some of the most heartbreaking and captivating music its composer, Giacomo Puccini, ever wrote. Over the remainder of spring, The Royal Ballet shine in a live broadcast of MacMillan Celebrated – a mixed programme that includes Requiem, Danses Concertantes and Different Drummer, demonstrating MacMillan’s extraordinary creative output over the span of his career – as well as in Swan Lake: a repertory favourite full of enchanting solos, spectacular pas de deux and atmospheric corps de ballet sequences.
In May, Aigul Akhmetshina performs the title role in Damiano Michieletto's poetic, contemporary staging of Bizet's beloved Carmen. Antonello Manacorda conducts an accomplished cast in this sultry new production, which evokes the passion and heat of Bizet's score – and brings some of opera’s greatest hits to fans across the world. And later that month, Artistic Associate of The Royal Ballet Christopher Wheeldon’s adaptation of Shakespeare’s late romance The Winter’s Tale celebrates its 10th anniversary. The cinema broadcast promises to be a treat for all ages – a modern ballet classic packed with emotional turmoil further heightened by Joby Talbot’s compelling score and Bob Crowley’s atmospheric designs.
The Season ends with two extraordinary final broadcasts. For the first time ever, the Royal Opera House has partnered with Sadler's Wells and Universal Music UK to bring cinema goers Message In A Bottle – the acclaimed dance theatre production by Sadler’s Wells Associate Artist Kate Prince, set to the music of Grammy Award-winning artist Sting. The production, filmed in 2022, tells a tale of loss, fear, survival, hope and love, and features new arrangements of many of Sting’s best-known songs: 'Every Breath You Take', 'Roxanne', 'Every Little Thing She Does Is Magic' and 'Fields of Gold'.
Following that, and closing the series, is a live broadcast of David McVicar’s Andrea Chénier – a production that sees Antonio Pappano, in his 23rd and final year as Music Director, conduct a cast that includes his longtime collaborator Jonas Kaufmann, alongside Sondra Radvanovsky and Carlos Álvarez.
Antonio Pappano, Music Director of The Royal Opera, said: ‘It’s a pleasure to know that, in my final year as Music Director, I will be both opening and closing the Royal Opera House’s Cinema Season – conducting a brand-new production of Rheingold and a much-anticipated revival of Andrea Chénier for fans across the world. It’s been incredibly important to me, over my many years at Covent Garden, to share the thrill and excitement of our productions with audiences far beyond the capital – and it’s a privilege to be continuing to do that right up until my tenure comes to its close.’
Our cinema programme has brought stunning productions to audiences across the globe since 2008. Broadcasts include exclusive behind-the-scenes footage, interviews and insights into the rehearsal process.
Booking opens on Tuesday 13 June 2023. Visit roh.org.uk/cinemas for more information.