George Bizet (1838-1875) has been celebrated for his masterpiece Carmen, a veritable French opera par excellence and one of the most performed around the world. Tragically, the composer never experienced the success of his work during his lifetime, having died only three months after its premiere in Opéra-Comique in Paris. The libretto is an adaptation by Henri Meilhac and Ludovic Halévy of Mérimée’s eponymous novel. At first, the public and critics booed and dismissed the opera's content, hypocritically considered immoral by the 19th century bourgeois society, only to be initially recognized for its compositional craft by the likes of Massenet and Tchaikovsky. Even the cynical philosopher Nietzsche revered Carmen, calling it the “perfect antidote to the Wagnerian nevrose.” But to this day, Carmen has been represented 35 times at the Opéra-Comique, and it seems there’s no end in sight for its success! If Carmen’s popularity has grown over time, its anchoring in the operatic canon is nowadays definitive. Bizet and his librettists adapted the play with sensibility and cleverness, rich in a variety of memorable melodies that give shape to a fictive yet irresistible Spain. Bizet found a prime opportunity in Merimée’s Carmen to put into music a story about extreme passions: vengeance, sex, rivalry, betrayal, and even murder! Perhaps Tchaikovsky had the final say, whose praise largely helped to revive the rejected jewel: “Carmen is a masterpiece in every sense of the word.”

Browse recordings of Carmen

Stream Bizet’s awe-inspiring Carmen on is the best online platform for live streaming Bizet’s Carmen, offering you a VIP ticket to the most famous productions with world-class artists captured in the best audio quality and HD video. A cornerstone of the operatic repertoire, Carmen comprises a number of stunning musical works and arias, from the sparkling orchestral overture to the infamous Toreador song, and the timeless « L'Amour est un oiseau rebelle ». Rediscover the adventures of glamorous protagonists mezzo-soprano Carmen and tenor Don José, alongside Frasquita, Mercédès, Lillas Pastia, Escamillo, Zuniga, Micaëla, and a host of other characters on at any place and any time!

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A selection of our live streaming Carmen operatic performances are available for free to all registered users, and the rest can be unlocked with a subscription. Live video events stream right to your living room from the most famous opera houses, and you can watch our performances streaming on your biggest screens with AirPlay, Chromecast, and our new Roku app. No matter where you are in the world, you’ll be guaranteed virtual tickets at venues like the Staatsoper Berlin, the Glyndebourne, the Metropolitan Opera, and many more. Watch the finest and most staged French opera, with a libretto by Henri Meilhac and Ludovic Halévy, in the best productions all over the world, from New York to Paris!

The greatest artists in the most famous Bizet opera on your #1 classical music streaming channel

Georges Bizet (1838-1875) was a Romantic French composer, best known for his operas and particularly celebrated for his final work, Carmen, now one of the most popular works in the entire operatic repertoire. This four-act opéra comique is an innovative, avant-garde work, shocking and fascinating audiences upon its premier in 1875. Set in Seville, the opera revolves around Carmen, a captivating free woman whose life choices condemn her. Ending up in jail after a fight with another cigar seller, Carmen seduces young brigadier Don José, Micaëla's fiancé, and promises him love if he returns her freedom. This comic opera ingeniously adapts the original eponymous novella by Prosper Mérimée into a vibrant musical score, where passion and desire clashes with lawlessness and scandal. Listen to this groundbreaking masterpiece alongside Ernest’s Guiraud’s orchestral arrangement of Bizet’s opera, the Carmen Suite, with’s online music streaming experience!