The Story of Carmen

Opera abridged for Young Audience
Composer: Georges Bizet | Librettist: H. Meilhac, L. Halevy | Original Author: Prosper Mérimée

Run time: Approx. 1 hr 10 mins with no intervals.
Language: French (with Cantonese narration) | Surtitle: Chinese / English

The Story of Carmen is based on the French Opera Carmen , with music by Georges Bizet (1838 -75) and libretto by H. Meilhac and L. Halevy after the original short story by Prosper Merimee (1803-1870).

The production will take the form of a series of scenes carefully selected and adapted in order to reduce the total performance time from two-and-a-half hours to approximately 70 minutes. The scenes will be linked together with brief narratives spoken in the local dialect by an actor in the guise of the original author, Merimee, who will present the powerful story as a succinct and cohesive work of art. The script of the narrative will be specially written for this production by Prof. Lo Kingman, who is director of the entire project.


There will be 12 musical numbers comprising the most famous and effective pages of the opera. The scenes will be fully staged with costumes and scenery specially designed in a style that emphasizes simplicity, refinement and dramatic appeal.

Each performance consists of twelve musical numbers:

  • Prelude
  • Habanera: Love is a rebellious bird
  • Duet: Mother’s blessing
  • Seguidilla: Temptation and escape
  • Gypsy Song
  • Toreador Song
  • Smugglers’ Quintet
  • Flower Song
  • La Liberte
  • Micaela’s aria
  • The Fight
  • The murder

The above numbers are linked by a narrator telling the story from the view-point of the original author, Prosper Merimee.


₍₁₎ 24/11, 11AM | ₍₂₎ 24/11, 3PM | ₍₃₎ 25/11, 11AM | ₍₄₎ 25/11, 3PM

Creative Team

* The Artistic Internship Scheme is supported by the Hong Kong Arts Development Council.

Pre-Performance Talk

Arts Experience Scheme for Senior Secondary Students

The Charm of Performing Arts

The arts bring to students experiences that connect life inside and outside the campus.

When textual narrative turns into live performance, lines, movements, lightings and shades on stage cast a spell of charm on the audience. This magical power created by stage performance calls for rumination and reflection, leaving the audience with sentiments of gratification when the curtain falls.

In fact, these arts groups don’t just perform. Their artists will also move downstage to share their creative process as well as the concept and structure of their works at pre/post-performance discussions and workshops, and share with participants on a wide range of topics from the history of drama to the symbolic meaning of a certain prop. These extension activities will reveal to students the flow of stage production and the many facets of performing arts.

Live performance exudes unparalleled charm in the eye of the audience, and gives artists a sense of fulfillment when they engage their audience and receive their warm applause. We believe that engaging in performing arts will bring enlightening experiences to audience and performers alike, and make them more understanding towards others and curious about life. We therefore look forward to the continuous support of principals and teachers to the Scheme. Let’s work together to enrich the arts experience of students and nurture young theatregoers.

* Since Audience Building Office (AB Office) under the Leisure and Cultural Services Department (LCSD)’s inception in the 2009/10 academic year, the Arts Experience Scheme for Senior Secondary Students by has been providing Other Learning Experiences in Aesthetic Development under the New Senior Secondary School Curriculum and encouraging personal visits to professional performing venues as well as immersion in the arts for enrichment of learning experience.
* Acknowledgement: The Arts Experience Scheme for Senior Secondary Students is supported by the Education Bureau.