Carmen (1845) by Prosper Mérimée
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Great classical music inspired by books
19. Carmen (1845) by Prosper Mérimée
'Carmen' was inspired by a true story Mérimée heard about a 'ruffian from Málaga who had killed his mistress, who consecrated herself exclusively to the public.' Bizet's opera was first performed in 1875 and wasn’t particularly successful; he died suddenly afterwards and knew nothing of the work’s later huge popularity. Pictured is soprano Elina Garanca as Carmen starring in the 2009 Metropolitan Opera production.