Incredible as it seems today, Bizet’s opera Carmen was coolly received at its 1875 premiere at the Paris Opéra-Comique; critics condemned its subject matter as lurid and its music as overly Wagnerian. Now hailed as the composer's supreme achievement, this colorful, passionate work continues to delight listeners around the world with its emotional, atmospheric music and the originality of its conception.
The compilation of popular highlights in the present edition offers two suites from the opera in full score: Suite No. 1 features the Prélude, Aragonaise, Intermezzo, Séguedille, Les Dragons d’Alcala, and Les Toréadors; Suite No. 2 includes the Marche des Contrebandiers, Habanera, Nocturne, Chanson du Toréador, La Garde Montante, and Danse Bohême. Reproduced from authoritative editions, these melodious and vivacious suites include all of the best and most memorable moments from Bizet's great opera.