Giuseppe Verdi

La traviata

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4 October - 10 December 2014
Tour 2014

A new production from the 2014 Festival

La traviata, the fallen woman. Does that phrase still have relevance today?

For Verdi it was a subject of intense personal significance. He and the singer Giuseppina Strepponi lived together for ten years before they married, enduring the objections of those who viewed her as a woman of no worth or moral standing.

Violetta, the fallen woman of the title, is a vividly real, flesh-and-blood creation. She suffers from the consumption which will inevitably kill her but which, in the view of the time, brought with it a feverish intensity and heightened erotic impulse. Life, for her, is to be grasped with both hands and lived to the full.

The character is based on Marie Duplessis, mistress of Alexandre Dumas fils, who fictionalised her in his novel La Dame aux camélias. When another writer, Marcel Proust, saw La traviata, he wrote: ‘It’s a work which goes straight to my heart. Verdi has given it the style it lacked … for a dramatic work to touch popular sentiment the addition of music is essential.’

That music was written by Verdi at the peak of his powers. It is lyrical, heartbreaking and unforgettable, appealing directly to the emotions and resulting in an opera that invents itself anew for every generation.

Sung in Italian with English supertitles.

The performance lasts approximately 2 hours and 30 minutes, including one interval of 20 minutes.

Dates & Times - La traviata

Woking, New Victoria Theatre

Date Start Time Finish Time Ticket Price Ranges  
Wednesday 29 October 2014 7:15pm 9:45pm £33.90 - £89.90 online + £2.85 transaction fee Book Now
Saturday 1 November 2014 7:15pm 9:45pm £33.90 - £89.90 online + £2.85 transaction fee Book Now

Canterbury, The Marlowe Theatre

Date Start Time Finish Time Ticket Price Ranges  
Wednesday 5 November 2014 7:15pm 9:45pm £29.75 - £57.25 online Book Now
Saturday 8 November 2014 7:15pm 9:45pm £33.25 - £60.75 online Book Now

Norwich, Theatre Royal

Date Start Time Finish Time Ticket Price Ranges  
Wednesday 12 November 2014 7:15pm 9:45pm £6.50 - £52 Book Now
Saturday 15 November 2014 7:15pm 9:45pm £6.50 - £52 Book Now

Milton Keynes Theatre

Date Start Time Finish Time Ticket Price Ranges  
Wednesday 19 November 2014 7:15pm 9:45pm £28.90 - £79.90 online + £2.85 transaction fee Book Now
Saturday 22 November 2014 7:15pm 9:45pm £28.90 - £79.90 online + £2.85 transaction fee Book Now

Plymouth, Theatre Royal

Date Start Time Finish Time Ticket Price Ranges  
Wednesday 26 November 2014 7:15pm 9:45pm £12.70 - £50.20 Book Now
Saturday 29 November 2014 7:15pm 9:15pm £12.70 - £50.20 Book Now

Dublin, Bord Gáis Energy Theatre

Date Start Time Finish Time Ticket Price Ranges  
Wednesday 3 December 2014 7:30pm 10:00pm €35 - €125 plus €1.50 s/c per ticket up to €12; 12.5% over €12 (max €5.95) Book Now
Friday 5 December 2014 7:30pm 10:00pm €35 - €125 plus €1.50 s/c per ticket up to €12; 12.5% over €12 (max €5.95) Book Now
Saturday 6 December 2014 7:30pm 10:00pm €35 - €125 plus €1.50 s/c per ticket up to €12; 12.5% over €12 (max €5.95) Book Now

Stoke-on-Trent, Regent Theatre

Date Start Time Finish Time Ticket Price Ranges  
Tuesday 9 December 2014 7:15pm 9:45pm £20.90 - £48.90 online + £2.85 transaction fee Book Now
Wednesday 10 December 2014 7:15pm 9:45pm £20.90 - £48.90 online + £2.85 transaction fee Book Now

Act I

At a party she is hosting, the courtesan Violetta Valéry is introduced to young Alfredo Germont. Violetta suddenly feels ill but assures her guests that she is fine. Alfredo, left alone with Violetta, confesses that he has loved her from afar for a year. She initially dismisses him, but is touched by his sincerity. After Alfredo and the other party guests leave, Violetta reflects on her feelings for him and on what life would be like if she accepted his love. But she cuts short her fantasy and rededicates herself to the pursuit of pleasure. 

Act II, Scene 1

For three months, Violetta and Alfredo have been living together in the country. Alfredo learns that Violetta has been selling her possessions in order to pay their expenses, so he leaves for Paris to make other financial arrangements. Germont, Alfredo’s father, unexpectedly visits, demanding that Violetta leave Alfredo so that his sister’s impending marriage will not be threatened by scandal. Violetta first objects but finally, in spite of her love for Alfredo, promises to renounce him forever. She writes Alfredo a letter ending their relationship, but before she can depart, Alfredo returns and is confused by her agitated state. After Violetta leaves, he reads her letter. Germont returns and tries to comfort his son, but Alfredo decides to confront Violetta.

Act II, Scene 2

At a soiree given by Violetta’s friend Flora Bervoix, the guests are surprised by Alfredo’s arrival. Violetta soon appears with Baron Douphol, her new lover. Alfredo gambles with the gentlemen, pretending not to notice Violetta, who is alarmed by his belligerent behaviour. Fearing for his safety, Violetta begs Alfredo to leave, but he demands that she leave with him. When Violetta refuses, Alfredo summons the other guests and publicly humiliates Violetta. Germont arrives and denounces his son’s behaviour. The Baron challenges Alfredo to a duel.


Violetta is now gravely ill, and Dr Grenvil confides to Annina, her servant, that Violetta will not live much longer. Violetta rereads a letter from Germont informing her that Alfredo fled after wounding the Baron in the duel, but that he now knows of her sacrifice and is hurrying to her side. Alfredo arrives, begging Violetta’s forgiveness. The lovers dream of resuming their life together, but fate intervenes. 

Creative Team 

Conductor David Afkham / Jeremy Bines (5, 8 Nov; 9, 10 Dec)
Director Tom Cairns
Designer Hildegard Bechtler
Revival Choreographer Daisy May Kemp
Lighting Designer Peter Mumford

Cast includes

Violetta Valéry Irina Dubrovskaya /
Natasha Jouhl (29 Oct; 1 Nov; 5, 9 Dec)
Alfredo Germont Zach Borichevsky /
Emanuele D’Aguanno (22, 29 Oct; 1 Nov; 5 Dec)
Giorgio Germont Roman Burdenko /
Evez Abdulla (29 Oct; all performances in Nov; 9, 10 Dec)
Marchese D’Obigny Benjamin Cahn  
Baron Douphol Eddie Wade
Flora Bervoix Lauren Easton

The Glyndebourne Tour Orchestra 
The Glyndebourne Chorus 

Venera Gimadieva as Violetta in La traviata, Glyndebourne Festival 2014, Photo: Richard Hubert Smith
Michael Fabiano as Alfredo and Tassis Christoyannis as Giorgio in La traviata, Festival 2014, Photo: Richard Hubert Smith
Venera Gimadieva as Violetta in La traviata, Glyndebourne Festival 2014, Photo: Richard Hubert Smith
Venera Gimadieva as Violetta in La traviata, Glyndebourne Festival 2014, Photo: Richard Hubert Smith
Venera Gimadieva as Violetta and cast in La traviata, Glyndebourne Festival 2014, Photo: Richard Hubert Smith
Venera Gimadieva as Violetta and cast in La traviata, Glyndebourne Festival 2014, Photo: Richard Hubert Smith
Venera Gimadieva as Violetta and Michael Fabiano as Alfredo in La traviata, Festival 2014, Photo: Richard Hubert Smith
Venera Gimadieva as Violetta and cast in La traviata, Glyndebourne Festival 2014, Photo: Richard Hubert Smith
Michael Fabiano as Alfredo in La traviata, Festival 2014, Photo: Richard Hubert Smith

‘This is an excellent starter Traviata, handsomely done and surging with passion’
The Times

'Tom Cairns’s modern-dress touring production enjoys fine leads in Irina Dubrovskaya and Zach Borichevsky, and skilful support throughout’
The Guardian

'...those in search of bright young things with obvious star potential will not be disappointed here. ...It's a terrific start to the Tour.'
Daily Mail

‘painfully believable’
The Daily Telegraph

‘…a lean, powerful version that reaches straight for the heart and gives it a good squeeze.’
The Arts Desk

‘Traviatas haven't exactly been thin on the ground in the UK of late, but this one brings much to enjoy for seasoned Verdiphiles and novices alike.’
What's On Stage


Having seen dozens of La Traviata's from most of the current top singers, all my family agreed yesterday's was the most enjoyable. Very well sung, played and acted by all. Irina Dubrovskaya's Violetta was superb. After an exemplary Sempre Libera I thought: She can do the vocal fireworks, but could such a young singer cope with the dignity needed in the second act and Pathos in the last act (not to mention the sheer stamina required). The second act was spot on and I have never been so deeply moved by the last act. I didn't find the updating objectionable and it was fun in the party scenes playing "spot the decade" on the outfits of the attractive and well dressed chourus. I wish that Glyndebourne would video the Tour productions as I could happily watch and listen to this many times on Blu Ray. It would also be a valuable document of the early careers of singers who should have stellar futures.

Singing was superb,but disappointed at the rather drab settings & also I thought that Violetta seemed too young for the part.

I’ve seen many a Traviata, and even been in a couple. The standard of the music, particularly the orchestra, was of the very highest, right down to telling pauses during which you could have heard a pin drop. The touring cast are very good, right up to the standard of the Festival cast.

But we had some reservations about the design and stage direction. I’m not averse to modern dress productions, but some of the directorial decisions seemed a bit perverse. Why was Annina mooning about all the time? What an earth was going on in the last Act? Everybody just sidled off, leaving poor ol’ Violetta to collapse in a heap. It rather spoiled the Kleenex moment.

But we enjoyed dinner at the Nether, with some excellent house red. It’s too cold in October for the festive picnic and this made a most acceptable substitute. And something needs doing about car parking. It was merry hell last night. Please ask the parking marshalls to encourage people to reverse in ... it might help get people away.

Last night's performance was excellent , not just very entertaining and enjoyable, but also exercised the emotions. There should be a longer interval, and whilst on this occasion, we expected the long, long delay in getting out of the car park and site, a better traffic management scheme for getting all the cars away is essential

A terrific evening as always, lovely singing and sublime music with a great setting. It has become a great way to slip into Autumn for us. In addition my Wife lost a brooch during the evening, your lovely staff sat her down elsewhere whilst they looked for it. They found, it restored it to her and her back to her seat during a break in the performance.
Truly service above and beyond but somehow I was not surprised. Well done all round. Thank you.

As requested I am sending you our collective thoughts on the performance of La Traviata Glyndebourne on Saturday 11th October 2014.

We thought that Tom Cairns’s production seemed an ideal one to introduce opera to a new audience. It put emphasis on getting the strong story line across in a straightforward way without seeking to add heavy-handed references to the present day, whimsy, or directorial indulgence at the expense of the composer and his librettist. The three main roles were admirably sung and portrayed by young singers, and the young vigorous chorus was in fine form. We particularly liked the way the party-goers in the second party scene were clearly more seedy. This seemed rightly to confirm what Verdi had in mind.

In the great scene between Violetta and Germont, the tension was firmly held throughout. Roman Burdenko was in excellent voice. We were also convinced by Zach Borichevsky’s portrayal of Aklfredo as a rather gauche and immature young man caught up in a relationship which was far deeper and beyond what he had expected it to be. The clarity of his Italian diction and presentation of the text in his vibrant voice was very fine. The opera is usually only truly memorable if the Violetta carries conviction in all the different aspects of her persona. She is a hedonist, yet ready to be self-sacrificial, and as she needs to be, tragically moving in the last scene. Irina Dubrovskaya, with her her beautifully poised melting vibrato, never disappointed. We were also pleased by the director's risky decision to have Violetta at the end, alone and bathed in light, making a gesture with outstretched arms for redemption both for herself and for the others. Overall this seemed to be a memorable production.

I hope these comments will be of interest to you

We both enjoyed a superb performance of La Traviata last Friday October 17th. The two youthful leads were outstanding and Violetta deserved fully the rapturous applause at the end. The entire evening was both moving and memorable. I admit that there was a tear in my eye at some of the magnificent arias which populate this opera.
It is a pity that for some of the audience the comments about the set and dress seemed to take away from the night. We simply sat back and basked in the best rendition of this particular opera that we have ever attended. Well done Glyndebourne!!

We thoroughly enjoyed the performance, especially the lead roles, they were excellent.
Perhaps there could be a half hour break? twenty minutes is a little short and i agree with the comments regarding the mass of cars trying to leave at the end.

A thoroughly enjoyable La Traviata but a nightmare getting out of Glyndebourne. What has happened to the management of traffic after the performance? It was pretty bad during the main season but for the two Touring productions we have so far seen it was absolutely awful.

We saw this production on 17 October. The music and singing were superb, particularly Violetta and Giorgio Germont. Although it was modern dress, the designer achieved a wonderful effect, particularly in the party scenes. Well done!

Quite simply superb in all ways. My first time at Glyndebourne, but it won't be the last. Excellent lead roles and a genuinely moving production along with outstanding music. Thank you!

We saw Traviata during summer and this touring version was as wonderful as the performance in the summer. Well sung, acted and played. The sets reminded me of some of the expensive 'boutique' hotels that are springing up in fashionable areas and it made logical sense to update the opera to this setting. Altogether an amazing evening.

The singing was superb - Violetta was quite the best I have ever heard. We just felt the set was rather economical and drab.

We saw the Tour production on 7th October and thought it was wonderful. The orchestra and the cast were excellent, and by far the best Violetta we have ever heard.

The only blemish was the spotlight on the main characters in Act 11 as it was jerky and very distracting.

We had the pleasure of attending La Traviata on Tuesday 7th October. The singing from Irina Dubrovskaya, Zach Borichevssky and Roman Buedenko, was of an excellent standard and we thoroughly enjoyed their performance. Fabulous! We left Glyndebourne, 'buzzing' in anticipation of more brilliant performances to come. Luckily we are coming to La Finta giardiniera and The Turn of the Screw very soon.
Our only negative comment would be, that we all felt the 'production' of La Traviata, was rather 'drab' and the lightning too dull to enjoy the stage setting.
However we are looking forward to the next production very much.

An excellent production, well sung by the international principals and chorus and
beautifully conducted. My wife and I attended the matinee performance on Sat
11th October.

What a wonderful evening! The whole cast were excellent but the lead characters were fabulous.
Both my Husband and I were slightly put off by the comments regarding the set and its period choice - we both thought the set was fantastic and added atmosphere without detracting from either the story or the performances - well done! Is it that important to understand the context of the story through the period it is set in - far too emotional a plot and performance to consider whether or not his would have happened.
Congratulations to all - a feast for the ears and the eyes - my favourite Glyndebourne perormance so far !!

I took a young family to the family's day last Saturday. I was fearful at recommending the pre opera talk after the last year's debacle with Handsel and Gretel when 6 year olds were asked to sit through a scholarly talk on the brothers Grimm with not much mention of the opera we were about to hear. This years offering was brilliant. The whole day was superbly organised with lots of fascinating and informative things to do and see for all ages.

The only sad comment I would make is that I wish the programme of all the events had been sent with the tickets as apart from the notice of the workshop and talk, which were ticketed, I had no idea there was so much going on and would have arrived earlier if I had known. I am so looking forward to families day next year.

Disappointed by the boring set and dull costumes. However the singing and music were superb and we had a great time.

We loved the opera, singing and orchestration. The singing, particularly Violetta's was wonderful. We were dismally disappointed with the sets, minimalistic to the extreme with a scruffy love nest, so much more could have been made of the Paris party scenes. Furthermore, the costumes were drab and would have been far more exciting with the use of some colour. It was a shame a little more detail would have made all the difference.

7th October performance

Very strong and impressive performance, especially Violetta and Germont. The orchestration seemed a little heavy handed in terms of percussion, however
. Good to be in a hall with excellent sight lines and being close enough to the action to see the expressions on the performers' faces - it made us feel very involved.

The organisation for parking and eating was efficient, except when we came to leave - we had to wait over 30 mins while cars inched forward as four double rows sorted themselves out to the one lane exit - surely this could be done much better? Staff could be deployed to regulate exiting traffic and use a one-way circular system for example?

Went to the 4 p.m. performance on the 11th October…It was the best Traviata I have ever seen,the acting and singing,sublime.

One of the finest performances I have seen at Glyndebourne. The performance of Violetta was a tour de force. The whole cast of singers and musicians contributed to an evening of pleasure and enjoyment

The modern dress jarred, the stage sets dull and dreadful and the ending spoilt by Alfredo and his father strolling off as if they were on their way to the pub. However, the singing was first class.

A few changes from the festival but not many. Giorgio does not remove his jacket in Act 2 Scene 1. In Act 3 Giorgio's letter is read by Violetta rather than by Giorgio off stage. I have no real preference either way. Cast stunning. Festival Giorgio unsurpassable but I preferred the tour Alfredo and I found the tour Violetta more in character. Unlike in the festival she is allowed to cough suggesting TB and this is probably not a good idea in these highly medicated times. I paid £8 for a nice standing place but would have felt it money well spent if I had paid £250 for a top price ticket in the summer. Vintage Glyndebourne.

Violetta was amazing. I hope Glyndebourne secure the services of Irina Dubrovskaya again in the very near future; in the meantime anyone in reach of a tour venue book a seat before they go on the black market. The production was more than excellent; it was absorbing and exciting to listen to such wonderful singers. I will try and see it again!

I completely agree with Peter Pulzer's comments that the opera sits best in the nineteenth century, where the composer wanted it. I found the performance even more enjoyable than the festival production. The balance between voices was near perfect, and there was a chemistry between Violetta and Alfredo missing in the earlier version.

4 October 2014 4pm

The best opera we have seen at Glyndebourne. Fantastic and so enjoyable. The lead singers were superb, especially Violetta and the applause at the end was thoroughly deserved. We shall always remember the wonderful occasion. The cast really deserved a standing ovation, but the clapping went on and on!
Congratulations to all the cast, production team and musicians.
Our visit was a birthday treat and will always be remembered.
Thank you!

The opening production on 4th October was excellent. Excellent interpretation; performance and staging. It bodes well for this year's Tour.

Since La Traviata is firmly set in mid-nineteenth century, I see no no point is transferring it to an Edwardian or 1920s setting. But that is 'director's opera' for you. However, musically - and this is what we travel quite long distances for - the performance was flawless. Dubrowskaya as Violetta was outstanding. I am sure we shall hear more of her. burden as the older Germont as also memorable.

We saw the first Tour performance of La Traviata on 4th October and, without doubt, our party agreed FA96Ethis was the finest production we have seen of this opera. The singing of the three principals was superb and in the duets and ensembles the balance of the voices, chorus and orchestra was excellent. A Verdi evening to be long remembered. Touring audiences have something very special to look forward to this autumn!

14 of us (Old girls from Brighton and Hove High School 1962 intake) watched La Traviata on Saturday, and we were thrilled by the beautiful singing, clever sets and stage choreography. Violetta and Alfredo's beautiful voices floated across the auditorium, and we really had a wonderful time. It is our third annual visit, and this was our favourite. Thank you.

Irina Dubrovskaya is a great singer! I hope she will be many times at Glyndebourne! I come from Italy to hear her voice!
The location is gorgeous, my compliments!

This was a wonderful production - we enjoyed it with friends - their first opera. The casting was perfect - if you have not got a ticket you should try and get one, you will be glad you did.

Glyndebourne Touring's production of La Traviata is excellent. Everything is pared down to allow the music, acting and singing to speak for the opera and, for once, all the well known tunes sounded fresh and real. The young cast is very good and I thoroughly recommend this for a good evening out.

I enjoyed the Tour production more than the Festival, the singing was divine and of course the music is without parallel. The terrible set spoilt much of our enjoyment in the Festival but we were prepared when we saw the opera last weekend, but really Glyndebourne, you have had sone dreadful sets in the past and I had hoped to be spared any more. Never mind, a terrific evening deserving of the full house and the ringing applause for the soloists and chorus.

I saw La Traviata on 20 August. Violetta and Alfredo were sung beautifully and the orchestral playing was excellent although David Afkham's tempi were much too slow at times such as the early part of the overture. I couldn't understand why the cast were in modern dress particularly as the plot turns on the credibility of the Victorian attitude displayed by Germont pere and the fact that tuberculosis is pretty well unknown in France today, and is treatable with antibiotics. Most disappointing were the dismal stage sets such as the country retreat that looked like scruffy student accommodation and the gaming tables shoved up against a wall. We all enjoyed the performace but long for unpretentious productions that are pleasing to the eye as well as the ear.

We can't give too much away until curtain up but this article might be of interest


Is this in a contemporary setting/dressing, or original?


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