Opera for One: Werther


Opera for One: Werther

Joan Sutherland Theatre, Sydney Opera House

Werther loves with thrilling intensity. But passion blooms into a dangerous obsession when the young poet discovers his love can never be realised.

Goethe’s powerful novel, The Sorrows of Young Werther, moved the world upon its release in 1774. Young men cried their anguish into tiny glass vials and carried around their tears to prove the depth of their emotions. They wore the poet’s signature clothes, and a few lovelorn souls even followed his path, seeking death over a life without love.

In the ultimate Romantic opera, Massenet’s rich score magnifies the drama and emotion of the story. Werther falls hopelessly in love with Charlotte in lyrical, melodious phrases. As Charlotte chooses duty over heart, Werther’s turmoil is palpable in restless music that bursts out of an enormous orchestra. The French composer’s ability to evoke mood and moment in music is on brilliant display.

Any tenor that can master the psychological range and musical difficulty of Werther is guaranteed a new signature role. Young star, Michael Fabiano, is renowned for his intense, character-driven performances. Hear his role debut as the troubled poet, with acclaimed mezzo-soprano Elena Maximova as Charlotte and Carlo Montanaro as conductor.


Yearnings spill onto crisp white parchment.
Letters that speak of a love that can never be.
Ink in place of tears.

If love is as strong as death,
why tremble before the curtain?
It will rise and we will pass to the other side…

Conductor Carlo Montanaro
Director Elijah Moshinsky
Co-Director Constantine Costi
Set Designer Michael Yeargan
Costume Consultant Sabina Myers
Original Lighting Design Robert Bryan
Lighting realised by David Parsons
Werther Michael Fabiano
Charlotte Elena Maximova
Sophie Stacey Alleaume
Albert Luke Gabbedy
Le Bailli Richard Anderson
Schmidt Nicholas Jones
Johann Andrew Moran
Brühlmann Haotian Qi
Käthchen Anna Dowsley

Opera Australia Children’s Chorus

Opera Australia Orchestra

Running time: approximately 2 hours & 50 minutes, including two intervals.

Opera for One

The StoryHide

Werther is in love with Charlotte. His love is passionate, uncompromising. He loves like a poet.

But Charlotte is engaged to another, and when she decides to fulfill her obligations, Werther is distraught.

The story follows Werther and Charlotte as they grapple with emotions that threaten to overtake their lives.

Buy TicketsBuy Tickets
View Cart
0 Items