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15–20 May 2019
Linbury Theatre

Henze’s astonishing final opera is a rhapsodic re-imagining of a classical tragedy. This production is brought to life by The Royal Opera's Jette Parker Young Artists.

When to see it

The Story

Phaedra’s desire for her step-son Hippolytus (Hippolyt) fills her with self-loathing and so she attempts suicide. Aphrodite stops her, though she is jealous of Hippolyt’s love for Artemis.

Read more… (Contains spoilers)


Phaedra was given its premiere in 2007. Hans Werner Henze’s final opera is full of originality, challenging our expectations of what opera can and should be. Re-imagining the classical story of Phaedra and Hippolytus (Hippolyt), the opera places Hippolyt at the centre of the story. It has been described as an ‘astonishing achievement’ brimming with ‘otherworldly beauty’, a ‘rich, beguiling and significant work’.

This production, directed by Noa Naamat, is brought to life by The Royal Opera's Jette Parker Young Artists, with Edmund Whitehead conducting Southbank Sinfonia in a score that brims with emotion and brilliance.