Francis Poulenc's piece, which focuses on tests of faith, is one of the few French operas written in the second half of the 20th century that has become part of the opera repertoire. Under the Jacobin dictatorship, 16 Carmelite nuns were executed in 1794 in Paris. This work, which premiered in 1957 under the classical direction of John Dexter, is based on their story. It is directed by Yannick Nézet-Séguin, who became the Met's new musical director from the 2018/19 season.
In Poulenc's fa...ntastic creation on faith and martyrdom, the role of the young Sister Blanche de la Force is played by Isabel Leonard, while the first prioress of the monastery is played by the Met's legendary soloist Karita Mattila. The production also features world-famous Canadian Adrianne Pieczonka, whose bright career brought her to Europe in the 1990s before she returned back across the ocean to impress American audiences, and those of the Metropolitan Opera, beginning in 2004. Sister Constance, the young novice, is played by Erin Morley, and Mother Marie by Karen Cargill. Among the male roles are the Chevalier de la Force played by David Portillo, and his father, played by Dwayne Croft, who has sung in more than 500 performances in 38 roles at the Metropolitan.
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