The Second Violinist

Landmark Productions & Irish National Opera

On-sale dates and times
Photo of Second Violinist

A dazzling modern opera that tells the foreboding story of a life falling apart, The Second Violinist unfolds like an unnerving thriller driven along by a haunting and compulsive score. 

Martin, an orchestral violinist, is consumed by social media platforms, morbid fantasies and violent video games. Seeking solace in the music of Italian Renaissance composer Carlo Gesualdo, his inner turmoil becomes ever more apparent as he searches for beauty in a dark, dark world. 

The latest collaboration between internationally renowned Irish playwright Enda Walsh and composer Donnacha Dennehy, this brooding production switches between multiple timelines. It marries multilayered set and video design with a score, rich in amplified sounds, harmonies and overtones – reflective of the heightening tension onstage – and played live by the dynamic music group, Crash Ensemble. Lyrical and ethereal singing by three soloists and a 16-strong chorus contrasts with Aaron Monaghan’s central performance, physically fraught, essentially wordless and utterly involving. 

1 hour 15 mins/no interval

Age guidance 14+ (contains nudity)

Presented by the Barbican

Winner of the FEDORA-GENERALI Prize for Opera 2017

Funded through an Arts Council Opera Production Award

Supported by Culture Ireland as part of GB18: Promoting Irish Arts in Britain

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*Excludes £3 booking fee
On-sale dates and times

Reviews

‘Exhilarating…a study in heartbreak…needs to be seen more than once‘
‘An extraordinary modern opera‘

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