Ukrainian National Opera returns to Eastbourne

Featuring an impressive cast and accompanied by a live orchestra numbering more than 30 musicians, Ukrainian National Opera return to the Congress Theatre, Eastbourne, this time presenting Puccini’s Madama Butterfly on March 22 and his La Boheme on March 23.
Madama Butterfly (contributed pic)Madama Butterfly (contributed pic)
Madama Butterfly (contributed pic)

The operas will be sung in Italian with English surtitles. Tickets from £37 at

Producer Alexej Ignatow said: “After last season’s premier in the UK, we are delighted to bring back Dnipro Opera theatre from the Ukraine. This opera and ballet theatre has a long-standing heritage of top-quality opera productions, and we are excited to bring it back to the UK in our 2024 opera season.

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“One of the most colourful and exotic, no opera can match the tragedy and sorrow of Puccini's Madama Butterfly. Set in Japan at the turn of the last century, it is the story of a doomed love affair between an American naval officer and his young Japanese bride whose self-sacrifice and defiance of her family leads to tragedy. Though infinitely sad and tragic, the compelling tale of Madama Butterfly remained Puccini’s favourite opera – his supreme theatrical achievements also gave the world its most sublime and beautiful arias in history – One Fine Day and Love Duet, as well as the Humming Chorus which has been popular with opera-goers for over a century. This touching tale of innocent love crushed between two utterly different cultures resonates as strongly as ever in today’s world.

“La Bohème is Puccini’s passionate story of love at first sight set in 19th century Paris, in the Bohemian district where students and upcoming artists live. Rodolfo, the poet and his friends live their lives in freedom and independence but at a price of financial struggle. One day, Rodolpho falls in love with his fragile neighbour Mimi, and life takes a turn for the better. Poverty and Mimi’s ill health then confront the couple with a harsh reality.

"They soon realise that love cannot conquer all.

"At the time of the premiere in 1896, this tale of freedom and independence at any cost gave a new outlook on life through everyday subject matter.”