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Marshall Artists Series presents Bizet's 'Carmen'

Feb. 21, 2014 @ 12:17 AM

HUNTINGTON -- Opera singers from around the world performed Bizet's passion-filled opera "Carmen" in Huntington on Thursday night as part of the Marshall Artists Series.

Bulgarian native opera singer Giorgio Lalov and his opera touring company, Teatro Lirico D'Europa, brought the 300-year-old opera to life for an audience at the Keith-Albee Performing Arts Center.

Taking place in mid 19th-century Spain, "Carmen" tells the story of Don José, who is training for priesthood but has murdered a man in a quarrel and has since enlisted in the army. His mother and Micaela, a woman who hopes to marry him, have followed him to the south.

José loves Micaela but is then dazzled by the more passionate charms of a gypsy named Carmen. He goes to jail because he helps Carmen escape a fight she started. Meanwhile, Carmen has fallen in love with a bullfighter, Escamillo.

Although the opera ironically was not successful when Bizet first introduced it in 1875, "Carmen" has endured, Lalov said, because of its passionate story and amazing music.

"It's something you see that happens in real life -- love and murder and passion -- and you put that into the music of Bizet and it is just great," Lalov said. "It is one of those operas that you love to see over and over again."

Up next in the Marshall Artists Series is "An Evening of Cabaret with Roslyn Kind" at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, March 11, at the Joan C. Edwards Performing Arts Center. Tickets are $45.

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