Opening in the 2023/24 Season at the London Coliseum
3 November – 11 November 2023 (5 Performances)
Under 21s can get free opera tickets to all ENO performances at every level of the theatre, and 21-35 year olds can get discounted opera tickets. Tickets for everyone begin at £10.
In the 2023/24 Season at the London Coliseum, the English National Opera (ENO) will present the acclaimed production of 7 Deaths of Maria Callas. In this highly anticipated UK premiere, renowned performance artist Marina Abramović makes her ENO debut with her production of 7 Deaths of Maria Callas, exploring the life, work and death of one of opera’s greatest stars. Tickets will go on sale to the public on Thursday 20 April 2023 at 10.00am.
Callas – whose private life was never quite able to be separated from her performances – has fascinated Abramović for decades, conceiving this operatic project as a homage and exploration of the great prima donna. This staging marks 100 years since the world renowned American-born Greek soprano was born.
Abramović first heard Maria Callas when she was fourteen years old in Yugoslavia. Since Callas’s voice caught her attention at a young age, Abramović has been drawn to their similarities; from their shared physical features to their personal attributes and relationships.
Immortalised through her place in popular culture, Callas (sometimes referred to as ‘La Divina’ – the divine one) is invoked on stage through a series of her most famous arias from La traviata, Tosca, Madam Butterfly, Carmen, Otello, Lucia di Lamermoor and Norma, with new music by Serbian Composer Marko Nikodijević.
Accompanying each of these aria performances are a series of short films starring Abramović and actor Willem Dafoe. Present on stage throughout the performance, Abramović plays the sleeping Callas, haunted by her greatest roles in a set that recreates the Paris apartment where Callas died.
In addition to performing in this ‘truthful and mesmerising declaration of love to Callas’ (Bachtrack), Abramović both directed and designed the operatic project. Leading the award-winning ENO Orchestra is Israeli-American Conductor Yoel Gamzou, and the costumes have been designed by Riccardo Tisci for Burberry.
Marina Abramović says: ‘One of the ways that Maria Callas has inspired me is through her mix between strength and fragility that you can see in both her work and life. That mix became the common ground between her and I and provided me with the foundation to produce this work. I am very honoured that I can perform the 7 Deaths of Maria Callas at the English National Opera in London which has such a long and rich history of incredible theatre. I always refer to her comment when she said “When I perform I make sure that one part of my brain is in complete control and the other part is loose and free.”’
The production premiered in September 2020 at Munich’s Bayerische Staatsoper and has since toured to co-production partners: the Greek National Opera, the Deutsche Oper Berlin, the Opéra national de Paris, and the Teatro San Carlo di Napoli.
Revivals in the 2022/23 season include performances at the Royal Theatre Carré in Amsterdam and Gran Teatre del Liceu in Barcelona. Casting to be announced soon.
7 Deaths of Maria Callas opens on Friday 3 November for 5 performances: Nov 3, 9, 11 at 19.30. Nov 5, 11 at 15.00.
Tickets available to purchase from www.eno.org/mariacallas