The Pearl Fishers

Melbourne Opera brings Georges Bizet’s perpetually popular opera set in exotic Sri Lanka to the Athenaeum Theatre. 

Production Details

September 20 – October 4th, 2014.
Athenaeum Theatre, Melbourne.
Alexander Theatre, Monash University
Running Time:

Composer: George Bizet
Conductor: Richard Divall
Director: Hugh Halliday
Starring: Lee Abhramsen, Brenton Spiteri, Philip Calcagno, Michael Lampard.

Melbourne Opera present Pearl Fishers conducted by Maestro Richard Divall AO OBE.

Les pêcheurs de perles (The Pearl Fishers) is an opera in three acts by the French composer Georges Bizet, to a libretto by Eugène Cormon and Michel Carré. It was first performed on 30 September 1863 at the Théâtre Lyrique in Paris, and was given 18 performances in its initial run.

Set in ancient times on the island of Ceylon, the opera tells the story of how two men’s vow of eternal friendship is threatened by their love for the same woman, whose own dilemma is the conflict between secular love and her sacred oath as a priestess. The friendship duet “Au fond du temple saint”, generally known as “The Pearl Fishers Duet”, is one of the best-known numbers in Western opera.


Production Sponsor: Henkell Brothers Investment Managers.

Press & Reviews

“Lush, colorful designs, expert choral and orchestral preparation and a strong, perfectly cast set of leads make for a satisfying, highly enjoyable night of opera.”
— Simon Parris, Man in Chair.



Cast & Crew

— Brenton Spietri & Robert Barbaro
Leila — Lee Abrhamsen & Barbara Zavros
Zurga — Phillip Calcagno & Michael Lampard
Nourabad — Eddie Muliaumaseali’i & Matthew Thomas

James Ash, Ariel Chou, Ian Cook
Giuliana D’Appio, Tim Daly, Cheryl Darvidis, John Davies, Jodie Debono, Paul Dernelly, Genevieve Dickson, Ali Doodstar, Dick Dowling, Daniel Felton, Brigitte Garofalo, Peter Hanway, Mark Henderson, Te Ua Houkamau, Maree Macmillan, Steve Marsh, Eloise Kerr, Geoff King, Cleo Lee-McGowan, Debra O’Connor, Alexandra Oke, John Overberg, James Penn, Anna Peterson, Sue Robertson, Roland Seidl, Cameron Sibly, Norma Tovey, Robert van Kuelen, Nick Webb, Megan Whiteside.


Director: Hugh Halliday
: Richard Divall
Head of Music-Chorus Master: Raymond Lawrence
Set Construction: Greg Carroll
Company Manager: Robbie McPhee
Producer: Greg Hocking AM