Carmen from Deutsche Oper Berlin

8th Sep, Berlin, 11:14pm, we just watched opera Carmen at the parking deck of the Deutsche Oper Berlin. I’m 41 and I have to admit I didn’t know the story of Carmen until the very beginning of the show. I quickly read the synopsis from wikipedia. So, there is the factory guard Jose who has to tie Carmen for attacking another worker. Carmen seduces him to let her go. In turn, Jose is prisoned. The parking deck is a giant concrete hall decorated with colourful paintings and good dramatic lighting and made soft. The singers were great actors as well. I read somewhere that it takes 10 years to be able to sing opera. The first time you watch Carmen, you’d realise you already know all the music. We watched Carmen seduce and make puppets out of Jose and his lieutenant Zuniga with her song “tra la la la”. It’s hard not to respect a driven and manipulative woman. Before reading the rest I knew Jose would be dragged in her powerful current. Indeed he finds himself following her first into her hideout, then into a wild spot in the mountains. As it happens to every meek man, she loses interest. She reminded me of the Dean character in the book On The Road, who is also very passionate about life, restless, dragging his friends into a new adventure by the hour, who are more than willing to follow him, mesmerised by his energy, by Dean’s hunger for life. Carmen doesn’t have the same urgency but definitely has the same burning passion, same boldness, which makes her endearing. I really liked the actor playing Toreador Escamillo who portrayed him as a peacock, an ostentatious act that was hilarious, which reminded me of beetlejuice. Unfortunately we didn’t get to see more of Escamillo, because it was an abridged version of the play.

Stream recording:

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