The English National Opera (ENO) is to stage a new contemporary version of Verdi’s Luisa Miller (1849), a tragedy of childhood love crushed under the weight of family expectations, the opera company has announced.

This new production is by rising star Czech director Barbora Horáková. The Prague-born director was awarded Newcomer of the Year at the 2018 International Opera Awards. She is house director at the Staatsoper opera house in Hanover, Germany.

The contemporary retelling delves into the complex web of love, intrigue and oppressive familial relationships, while showcasing Verdi’s gift for beautifully fashioned lyrics and sensitive orchestration.

The story centres on the doomed love affair of childhood sweethearts Luisa and Rodolfo. Though from opposing sides of the class divide, the couple are united by their love. When Rodolfo’s father arranges for his son to make a politically beneficial marriage, however, their dreams of being together begin to unravel, with ultimately tragic consequences.

Former ENO Harewood Artist soprano Elizabeth Llewellyn sings the title role. Known for her full distinctive voice, Elizabeth has quickly risen through the ranks since making her debut as Mimì in La bohème (The Bohemians, Puccini, 1896) less than 10 years ago and has established herself internationally as an artist of distinction.

Starring alongside her is tenor David Junghoon Kim – an alumnus of the Jette Parker Young Artist Programme – as Rodolfo. Conductor Alexander Joel returns to the Coliseum to lead the orchestra, following his performances of La bohème last season.

Performances start tomorrow (12 February) and run to 6 March. Tickets are on sale now.



Rodrigo Porras Garulo as Rodolfo and Izabela Matula in Oper Wuppertal’s production of Luisa Miller (Jens Grossmann).