The Minotaur

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Cheap The Minotaur tickets at the Royal Opera House


The Show

The ancient myth of The Minotaur is among the best known of Greek legends. Harrison Birtwistle reworked the tale into a memorable opera that premiered at the Royal Opera House in 2008. A libretto by Forward Prize-winning poet David Harsent was commissioned by the Royal Opera House to accompany the performance.

The opera is beautiful and darkly mysterious, and showcases the talent of one of Britain’s leading composers at the height of his powers. This two-act opera presents 13 scenes set to a modernistic score. It runs for approximately 2 hours and 50 minutes.

The Story

Birtwistle’s reworking of the famous Greek myth focuses on the troubled inner world of the part-man / part-bull Minotaur and his longing to discover his true identity and voice. Harsent’s libretto adds lyrical intensity to create a rich, creative partnership with Birtwistle. The pair worked together prior to The Minotaur collaboration on works such as Gawain, another Royal Opera commission performed at Covent Garden in 1991.

The Minotaur brings a dark and visceral dramatic world to the stage. Olivier Award winning designer Alison Chitty presents elegant designs that depict the centre of the labyrinth as an amphitheatre-like space, where the Minotaur devours his victims.

But the audience also witness the Minotaur’s human side. His dreams are vocalised; in them he acquires language and gives voice to his dark existence in monologues of poignant power. In the central role, acclaimed bass John Tomlinson wears a bull's head mask reminiscent of those used in ancient Greek rituals.

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