On 17th September 2016, Vilnius City Opera staged a brand new, innovative electronic production entitled “e-Carmen”, of which mezzo-soprano Justina Gringyte was cast in the title role. This ambitious new production, which was composed by Marijus Adomaitis and inspired by Bizet’s Carmen, has been praised by local press, with Asta Andrikonyte (Lietuvos rytas Culture Magazine) writing:

“Many people have been waiting for the new Vilnius City Opera project “e-Carmen” with anxiety, not expecting that you can squeeze the emotions of Carmen into an electronic cage. However, they achieved the impossible – the electronic version of Carmen at Compensa Hall, conducted by Richard Šumila, was as charming as the original with ever-growing curiosity throughout.

“Giancarlo Monsalve and Justina Gringyte perfectly embody the main characters as Don Jose and Carmen, and in the electronic music they are as comfortable as fish in water, even though they had to unlearn the original Bizet lines they have sung so many times before.”

Of the production, Justina said:

“It was amazing to be a part of something so new and innovative, especially because classical and electronic music are so contrasting. By synthesising these contrasting musical styles, Marijus Adomaitis (composer) and Dalia Ibelhauptaite (director/producer) have opened the door to new audiences – opera enthusiasts who would otherwise not consider listening to electronic music, and electronic music listeners who wouldn’t typically visit the opera.

It was obviously extremely challenging for all of us involved in the production. But personally for me it was also a very refreshing, rewarding and enriching experience. Portraying Carmen in these new colours has made me view the role in a new light, which I am excited bring to future productions of the opera.”

Justina is currently performing at The Bolshoi in Le Damnation de Faust (tickets and info), and she will be reprising the role of Carmen at Teatro Palermo in November (tickets and info).

Photo credit: Martynas Aleksa