Benoît Jacquot’s production of Massenet’s tragic opera Werther explores the conflict between duty and our most passionate desires.
Werther loves Charlotte, but she promised her mother on her deathbed that she would marry Albert. To console him after the marriage, Charlotte suggests that Werther should travel – but not move on.
Through a series of letters, the two forgo, but not forget, their love for one another, until Werther’s eventual return demands an inevitable decision from Charlotte – duty, or passion?
Werther has been a permanent part of the international repertory since 1903, having proved amongst Massenet’s most enduringly popular works.
Director Benoît Jacquot’s 2004 production for The Royal Opera, with elegant set designs by Charles Edwards, makes manifest the opera’s theme of keeping up appearances while torrid passions rage beneath.
Sung in French with English surtitles.
Learn more about London operas within the West End.