An adaptation of one of the most popular operas, Bizet’s Carmen, is making its way from the theatre stage to the heart of Strait Street on the 24th November at 8.30pm.

The popular opera, which deals with actions fuelled by jealousy and their aftermath, is being organised by the Strada Stretta Concept – a strand of the Valletta 2018 Foundation’s cultural programme.

Valletta 2018 Chairman Jason Micallef said “Strada Stretta Concept has become established as an integral part of the regeneration taking place in Strait Street. The diverse programme of high quality events is at a very interesting stage and will intensify as from January when Malta will be hosting the EU Presidency in 2017 and in the following months leading us to, and during 2018 when Valletta will be witnessing highly participative cultural projects all year round”.

The Carmen production was adapted by Giuseppe Schembri Bonaci and is being directed and produced by Schembri Bonaci. It will feature the opera’s original music and libretto while the score was adapted by Gjorgji Cincievski. Maltese folk singers (għannejja) will be the narrators in the production taking place outside and inside Splendid.

The artistic director for Strada Stretta Concept Giuseppe Schembri Bonaci said “Carmen has been transported from the theatre to the street and into the community. We promise a fun experience for audience members to enjoy opera in a contemporary setting.”

Following Carmen, the next event in the Strada Stretta calendar includes  a classical baroque concert taking place at Loop Bar on the 1st December at 8.30pm as part of the Malta International Organ Festival. Another performance ‘Li Bqajna’, set for the 19th December, includes dance, original music by Mariella Cassar- Cordina with narration and audio-visual work by artist Carmen Aquilina.

Other events planned for the year 2017 includes Giuseppe Schembri Bonaci’s translation of Dario Fo’s Mistero Buffo with Maltese folk singers and Mario Pirovano; a concert, film and symposium dedicated to Clockwork Orange author Anthony Burgess; an Ethiopian-themed evening in Strada Stretta; a theatrical performace titled ‘Star of Strait Street’ about Christina Ratcliffe, a singer and dancer at The Morning Star in Valletta, featuring Polly March; as well as an adaptation of Puccini’s Turandot.


2017 Programme Highlights:

January – A fusion of percussion, piano and baroque elements

Ruzar Briffa Evening, in collaboration with l-Għaqda tal-Malti – Università and Akkademja tal-Malti

February – Solo concert by mezzo soprano Clare Ghigo

March – Dario Fo’s Mistero Buffo with Maltese folk singers and Mario Pirovano

April – A concert, film and symposium dedicated to Clockwork Orange author Anthony Burgess

An Ethiopian-themed exhibition and evening in Strada Stretta

May –  Lunchtime and evening jazz events with Sandro Zerafa and soprano Maryana Bodnar

June – Katel Delia and the għannejja from Zejtun

July – Tom Armitage & Jess Rymer – Classical Concert

October – Talk on Emvin Cremona

November – Turandot

December – Conference on the links between Preca and Passmore


Dates are subject to change.