Music by Jeanine Tesori; Libretto by Tazewell Thompson


Family is everything. Even when it falls apart.

A generational rift leads to father and son at odds, with the fate of the family at risk.

Asking ever-relevant questions of race, duty and the extent to which loyalty can hold before breaking, Blue follows an African American family as the patriarch’s job as a policeman clashes with his activist son’s notions of equality and justice.

Acclaimed Tony Award-winning composer, Jeanine Tesori’s score contains influences from jazz, gospel, hymns and musical theatre – perfect for those new to opera, as well as opera enthusiasts.

In the UK opera debut of this intimate family drama, ‘fast-rising’ (The Guardian) star of British theatre Tinuke Craig fuses the joy, hope and pride of the community with a devastating emotional core.

Zwakele Tshabalala plays the Son alongside former ENO Harewood Artist, Nadine Benjamin (Mother), and Kenneth Kellogg, who reprises his role as the Father following rave reviews for his performances across the US and Europe. Former ENO Mackerras Fellow Matthew Kofi Waldren, conducts, with set and costumes by Alex Lowde.

Book your opera tickets for a ‘powerful’ (New York Times) story of a family torn asunder, in Jeanine Tesori’s Blue at the ENO’s London Coliseum.

Supported by Cockayne – Grants for the Arts, Patti and George White, Professor Mick Peake OBE, The Aaron Copland Fund for Music, Kate Olver & Jeremy Young, Richard Bridge, Michael Dyer and Elizabeth Wright

'Blazing central performances – wonderfully sung and acted with passionate conviction'


'Excellent individual performances'

The Stage

'Magnificently staged by English National Opera, American composer Jeanine Tesori’s important opera Blue is a must-see game-changer.'

Culture Whisper

'Jeanine Tesori’s Blue hits us in the guts when it matters most.'

The Arts Desk

Running Time
2hrs 25mins

There is one interval.


We have an Access Scheme for our audiences with a disability, a health condition, or different access needs to ensure everyone has a comfortable and enjoyable visit.

Tickets start at just £10 plus £3.25 booking fee per ticket. A maximum of £9.75 per transaction is charged for Multi-Buy Packages.
Sung in English. Our surtitles system displays sung words above the stage.

This production contains themes and descriptions of personal and systemic racist violence, and loss of a family member. There is limited use of strong language, including racist slurs.

Age guidance: 12+

For more information, please contact the London Coliseum on 020 7845 9300 or [email protected]

Discover Blue

Blue 2023 Creative Team

Blue 2023 Cast