Opera is an art form replete with tales. Find your way through narratives, adventures, and biographies. Find out how opera brings many streams of the arts together.

Cassandra Feature
Who is Cassandra?

In one of the most intriguing scenes in Bernard Foccroulle’s Cassandra, the mythological protagonist lingers in the library of the dead. Stoically, she declares that the books that surround her do not tell her full story. But who then is Cassandra? Who is this woman who, with her gift and her curse, captured the imagination of so many of our literary forebears and lives on today in countless stories and retellings – including a new opera?

Metastasio - 28 opera librettos and still counting

Metastasio’s heritage consists of 28 opera librettos, 8 librettos for oratorios, 36 for serenades and 37 for cantatas and is completed by a large number of songs, compliments, or works not intended for music like 32 sonnets, translations from Greek, spiritual poems or odes for weddings, as well as his over 2.600 published letters. If these numbers are impressive in themselves, the wealth of musical production Metastasio’s poetry inspired in the composers of his century is simply staggering and made of him the by far most influential librettist not only of his but very likely of all times: these 28 opera librettos were set to music as unthinkable 1.050 operas.

Orfeo, Garsington Opera
Orpheus and the power of song

Part human, part divine, Orpheus embodies the power of song. The sun god Apollo is said to have taught him his skills as a musician and poet. He deployed them to charm his contemporaries on earth but, beyond that, to gain entry to the forbidden territory of the underworld. It is no wonder that he became the emblem of the artist who transcends mundane cares and brings us closer to eternal verities.

Nor is it a surprise that Orpheus has been chosen by so many composers as a symbol of the artist, whose life’s work is to strive, to fail, but to be remembered, to become immortal. 

Centre de Perfeccionament Palau de Les Arts
The OperaVision Podcast

OperaVision next generation podcast series charts the journeys of singers on four young artist programmes across Europe – Oper Frankfurt, Palau de les Arts, the Rossini Opera Festival and Opera for Peace. Every month, stage director and podcaster Nina Brazier, brings you privileged backstage access to masterclasses, rehearsal rooms and dressing rooms.

Janáček and Brno are intimately linked
Wagner and Weill
Strong Women in Opera: Carmen

Since the opera's premiere almost 150 years ago, Carmen has dominated opera stages worldwide. A femme fatale who beguiles every man who meets her, and dare one add, every theatre-goer at that, she has become the poster girl for sexual liberation and the unconditional will to freedom. ‘Free I was born, and free I will die!’ she famously calls out right before she is stabbed to death by her jilted lover.