Media Release: Werther back in Scotland for the first time in 25 years

WERTHER, one of French composer Massenet’s finest works, is to be staged in Scotland for the first time since 1986. Composed in 1892, the opera perfectly encapsulates the late 19th century take on the inevitable heartbreak that comes with obsessive love

Werther has escaped the city to concentrate on his painting. He finds himself in a rural idyll that offers all the inspiration he could ever desire, including a perfect muse in the local beauty Charlotte. But she is promised to another man, one who seems to be everything Werther is not. As Werther’s infatuation grows, he is driven to ask himself the ultimate question: what is life without her?

Director, Pia Furtado, sets this new production at the start of the 20th century, unveiling an intimate study of one man’s hopes and dreams as she tells the story from the perspective of the young Romantic, Werther himself.

Through her trademark theatrical style, Furtado accentuates the heightened emotions of the piece, bringing to life a story that is a timeless testament to the destructive power of obsession.

Through a superlatively expressive score, Massenet reveals the magnetism of the tale which is based on the German epistolary novel The Sorrows of Young Werther by Goethe. Scottish Opera’s music director, Francesco Corti, who will conduct The Orchestra of Scottish Opera said: “Massenet’s passionate music is intoxicating. He subtly conveys every possible emotion: from Charlotte’s tortured conflict to Werther’s unstable passion, melancholy and increasing hysteria.”

Linbury Prize-winner, Helen Goddard, joins the production as designer, with lighting design in the hands of Oliver Fenwick.

Hungarian mezzo, Viktoria Vizin, renowned the world over for her Carmen, sings the role of Charlotte for the first time, and acclaimed American tenor, Jonathan Boyd, takes on the role of Werther.

Up and coming soprano, Anna Devin, arrives fresh from the Royal Opera House’s Young Artists Programme to sing the role of Sophie. Baritones, Roland Wood and Jonathan Best, sing the roles of Albert and Le Bailli, respectively.

And Scottish Opera veterans, Harry Nicoll and Jonathan May. join the cast as Schmidt and Johann.



Charlotte – Viktoria Vizin

Sophie – Anna Devin

Werther – Jonathan Boyd

Albert – Roland Wood

Le Bailli – Jonathan Best

Schmidt – Harry Nicoll

Johann – Jonathan May

Production Team

Conductor – Francesco Corti

Director – Pia Furtado

Designer – Helen Goddard

Lighting Desginer  – Oliver Fenwick


Theatre Royal, Glasgow

Fri 15 Feb 7.15pm

Sun 17 Feb 7.15pm*

Wed 20 Feb 7.15pm

Sat 23 Feb 4pm+

Werther Unwrapped

Tue 19 Feb 6pm

Festival Theatre, Edinburgh

Tue 26 Feb 7.15pm

Thu 28 Feb 7.15pm+

Sat 2 Mar 7.15pm*

Werther Unwrapped

Wed 27 Feb 6pm

Running Time approximately 2 hrs 40 mins

Sung in French with English supertitles

*Pre-show talk

+Audio-described performance/Touch Tour

For additional press enquiries please contact:

Claudia Monteiro, press manager, 0141 242 0511,

Emma York, press officer, 0141 242 0552,

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Contact: Claudia Monteiro
Phone: 0141 242 0511