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Handel’s sexiest opera at London’s oldest new theatre

See Semele performed by the Monteverdi Choir and English Baroque Soloists

– 2 May 2019 | Book tickets

Performed by the Monteverdi Choir and English Baroque Soloists under the baton of John Eliot Gardiner, MCO's production of Semele will visit the Alexandra Palace Theatre as part of a prestigious European tour.
 
Semele, often billed as an oratorio, is in reality an English-language opera, with a libretto by the Restoration playwright William Congreve, based on one of the more salacious passages of Ovid’s Metamorphoses; indeed, the piece’s risqué storyline – “Handel’s sexiest opera”, according to Gardiner – is one of the reasons it was suppressed after only a few performances in Handel’s lifetime.
 
In a concert-staging directed by Thomas Guthrie, a glamorous cast of young soloists will present a drama that combines themes of deception, sexual power-struggle, the delicate relationship between gods and humans, and tragedy – which is finally mitigated by the birth of none other than Bacchus, the god of wine.
 

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