Home » Opera and Ballet » The Nose at the Royal Opera House – 20th October to 9th November 2016

The Nose at the Royal Opera House – 20th October to 9th November 2016



Barrie Kosky makes his Royal Opera debut with a new production of Shostakovich’s surrealist satire, conducted by Ingo Metzmacher and translated by David Pountney

Shostakovich was only 20 when he began writing The Nose, his operatic debut based on a short story by Gogol. The composer turned Gogol’s surrealist fable into a satire with high energy, musical jokes and parodies. Shostakovich turned to Russian folksongs and polkas to create a highly imaginative piece.

Shostakovich finished the work in about a year, and in the following months gave successful performances of extracts from the opera. But it was to 1930 before The Nose was staged in full. Many did not see the humour and the opera was quickly dropped from the repertory.

The opera was revived in the 1960s and steadily gained popularity with audiences appreciating the surreal aspects of Shostakovich’s work. This new production is The Royal Opera’s first. Artistic Director of Berlin’s Komische Oper Barrie Kosky directs, fresh from his triumphant production of Saul for Glyndebourne Festival. The Nose is performed in English, in a new translation by David Pountney

The story centres around Major Kovalev who one morning discovers his nose has gone missing. A desperate hunt ensues.

Running time

The performance lasts around 1 hour 45 minutes; there is no interval.


Sung in English with English surtitles

If you would like more information or buy a ticket, visit the Royal Opera House website here

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