Story update: Beth Clayton withdraws from the Canadian Opera Company production of Carmen

Beth Clayton photographed by Jody Rogac for the February issue of FASHION
Beth Clayton photographed by Jody Rogac for the February issue of FASHION

The Canadian Opera Company announced yesterday that mezzo-soprano Beth Clayton, who was to play the title role in the company’s upcoming production of Bizet’s Carmen, has withdrawn due to “health reasons.” In the February issue of FASHION, the Arkansas-born singer told writer Olivia Stren, “It has all this tumult in it, but at the same time, it has so much joy and sauciness. And the more physical, the better for me; I love getting down and dirty. When I’m playing Carmen, I can honestly say ‘Yes! I am Carmen. ”

The COC has named Israeli mezzo Rinat Shaham as Clayton’s replacement for the first six performances–January 27 and 30 and February 2, 5, 7 and 9. A singer for the final six shows will be announced shortly. Shaham, who is making her COC debut, is no stranger to the Spanish temptress. She has made the role her signature, performing the Teatro dell’Opera di Roma, Minnesota Opera, Opéra de Montreal, Florida Grand Opera, New York City Opera, Vancouver Opera, New Israeli Opera, and the Glyndebourne Festival.

An interview with Beth Clayton appears in the February issue of FASHION. The Canadian Opera Company’s production of Carmen runs January 27 to February 27 at Toronto’s Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts (416-363-8231, coc.ca).

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