Courtesan with a Heart of Gold

La Monnaie, Brussels’ opera house, has a new production of Verdi‘s La Traviata updated to take place in a brothel, and it’s now available for free online viewing.  Leave it to those crazy Europeans!

La Monnaie La Traviata 2012 poster

Poster for the 2012 La Monnaie production of La Traviata; Photo by Flore-Aël Surum

Oh but what’s this…  Even some Europeans are uncomfortable with aspects of the production, prompting La Monnaie to invite four stage directors and production director Andrea Berth to comment on the question of artistic freedom, censorship, and what’s appropriate for the stage.  Interesting stuff…

Another interesting aspect of La Monnaie is their online database with information on past productions.  You can look for posters (like the one above) and design schematics (like the one below; I’m guessing the 1955 production didn’t have as many naked ladies prancing around).

La Monnaie La Traviata 1955 set design

Hours of entertainment for a library science student like me…