Louis Langrée conducts the Metropolitan Opera in a performance of Bizet’s masterpiece of the Gypsy seductress, who lives by her own rules, no matter the cost. The opera’s melodic sweep is as irresistible as the title character herself, a force of nature who has become a defining cultural figure. This drama—of a soldier torn between doing the right thing and pursuing the woman that he cannot resist—bursts with melody and seethes with all the erotic vitality of its unforgettable title character. Carmen was a scandal at its premiere and was much denounced in the press for its flagrant immorality. The power of the music and the drama, however, created an equally vocal faction in favour of the work. The composer Tchaikovsky and the philosopher Nietzsche both praised the opera, the latter identifying in the robustness of the score nothing less than a cure-all for the world’s spiritual ills. This performance features Clémentine Margaine (soprano), Roberto Alagna (tenor), and Alexander Vinogradov (bass) and was recorded at the Metropolitan Opera Hall in New York City, USA, in 2019.