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Dido and Aeneas

Il Pomo d'Oro, Joyce DiDonato and Fatma Said

Side profile of Joyce DiDonato with her hands clasped and raised upwards

A sumptuous pairing of Baroque masterpieces featuring an all-star cast conducted by Maxim Emelyanychev, with Joyce DiDonato and Andrew Staples as the ill-fated lovers in Purcell’s Dido and Aeneas.

Like a 17th-century Good Omens, Carissimi’s Jepthe explores themes of good and evil, hope and sacrifice. Andrew Staples takes the title role before transforming into Aeneas for a concert performance of Purcell’s heartrending opera, which reaches its climax with Joyce DiDonato singing ‘Dido’s Lament’. They are joined by the il Pomo d’Oro ensemble and choir, and by soloists including Fatma Said, Beth Taylor and Hugh Cutting.

Joyce DiDonato is one of the world’s finest opera singers, earning particular praise for her interpretations of Baroque music: ‘definitive … hair-raising intimacy and softness’ (OperaBase). Fatma Said is ‘flawless, radiant … a discovery’ (Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung), while Hugh Cutting is the first countertenor both to win the Kathleen Ferrier Award and to become a BBC New Generation Artist.

Running time: approximately 110 minutes, with 20 minute interval

Produced by the Barbican

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Digital programme

Joyce DiDonato leaning against a building with her eyes closed

Dido and Aeneas

Read our free digital programme to find out more about the music in tonight's concert: two Baroque tragedies that share tales of love and sacrifice.