OAE: Handel’s Semele
Be careful what you wish for. You don’t always want to see your lover for who they really are.
When Handel premiered Semele in Covent Garden in 1744, he shocked audiences expecting something solemn for Lent with this steamy, sexy story of gods having affairs with mortals.
It’s still a sensuous evocation of the illusions and delusions of love. Semele is smitten with Jupiter, but you can’t just buy a house and start a family when you’ve fallen for a god.
Performed here in its entirety, enjoy extraordinary arias and probably the best chorus music in any of Handel’s operas.
Soprano Louise Alder stars in the title role, while Christophe Rousset, the inspirational director of French ensemble Les Talens Lyriques, takes the conductor’s baton.
PerformersOrchestra of the Age of Enlightenment
Louise Alder soprano, Semele
Ray Chenez countertenor, Athamas
James Way tenor, Jupiter
Brindley Sherratt bass, Somnus, Cadmus
Rowan Pierce soprano, Iris
Catherine Wyn-Rogers mezzo-soprano, Juno
Ciara Hendrick mezzo-soprano, Ino
Jeremy Budd tenor, Apollo
Robert Davies bass, High Priest
Choir of the Age of Enlightenment
Dates & times
need to know
Please note start time of 7pm.
Pre-concert event: 6pm, Level Five Function Room, Royal Festival Hall
The Six Varieties of Love, with Roman Krznaric: If Semele had a more sophisticated vision of love, could her story end in a different way?
Book multiple Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment events in the same transaction and receive a discount.
2 – 3 events (15% discount)
4 – 7 events (20% discount)
8 or more events (25% discount)
Children and student £5 tickets are available for every concert. These discounts, and the £5 tickets, are not available on Premium seats.