English National Opera kick off their season at the end of September with a new Carmen, film director Sally Potter's first venture into opera production. With fifteen performances scheduled, they must be hoping for a warhorse+moviemaker hit on the scale of Anthony Minghella's Madam Butterfly.
The cast includes the fabulous Alice Coote and tenor Julian Gavin, currently impressing in OHP's L'Amore dei Tre Re. And tango legend Pablo Verón, star of Potter's film The Tango Lesson, will provide the choreography.
The most interesting thing to appear at this stage is the Carmen mini-site which ENO have cooked up to provide behind-the-scenes info. There's not a huge amount on there yet, but with blogs, videos, and a production diary it looks as if it has the potential to develop into more than just a bland marketing tool.
It already includes a hint from Sally Potter that her vision may ruffle conservative feathers - "a potentially radical approach cannot possibly harm it".
And she circumspectly reveals "various dramas have erupted about the translation of the libretto", which has already been "a year-long adventure". (Reading between the lines is shaping up to provide some of the best entertainment).
Even if they just stick to the nuts and bolts of how a production is put together, it'll be an education. If they have the time to keep the site updated and the guts not to over-sanitise, it could be fascinating.