When Written on Skin had its premiere at the 2012 Festival d'Aix-en-Provence, conducted by George Benjamin himself, it received a standing ovation. The opera's arrival at Covent Garden in 2013 was eagerly anticipated, and provided audiences with the opportunity to experience the work of two of Britain's greatest living artists. Benjamin previously collaborated with playwright Martin Crimp on Into the Little Hill, a magical retelling of the Pied Piper fairytale, and for this new work they joined forces with acclaimed stage director Katie Mitchell. For all three, the production marked their main-stage debut at the Royal Opera House.
The tale, inspired by a medieval legend, tells of an ill-fated troubadour, drawn into a liaison with an innocent maiden. But they are observed by the jealous eye of her protector, who wreaks a shocking revenge on the young couple.
Text: Martin Crimp
The Protector: Christopher Purves
Agnès: Barbara Hannigan
Angel 1/The Boy: Bejun Mehta
Angel 2/Marie: Victoria Simmonds
Angel 3/John: Allan Clayton
Angel Archivists: David Alexander, Laura Harling, Peter Hobday, Sarah Northgraves
Orchestra of the Royal Opera House
Co-Concert Master: Sergey Levitin
Conductor: George Benjamin
Director: Katie Mitchell
Designs: Vicki Mortimer
Lighting design: Jon Clark
Plus: Extra features: Interview with George Benjamin, Introduction to Written on Skin and a Cast gallery.
Picture: 1:2:35 Cinemascope
Sound: 2.0 LPCM Stereo/ DTS 5.1
Region code: NTSC 0
Running Time: 90+8 mins