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Carmen

We will tell you the story of Carmen, a notorious Gypsy, and her love for a young soldier named Jose. Everyone knows her name, mothers name daughters after her. All over the world this name symbolizes the same thing - ruthlessly capricious passion - the secret of female love. Parts of Carmen and Jose are performed by Olympic Champions Natalia Bestemyanova and Andrei Bukin.

Synopsis. Jose is awaiting his verdict. He knows it will mean death. He is writing about the last years of his life, aware that no one will exonerate him. He tosses the used paper through his cell bars... A street urchin, scavenging for food, picks up the paper and realizes it tells a story, even if he is not able to read it. The waif stashes the paper, but overtaken by curiosity, eventually brings it to the town square. Everyone only laughs. The street urchin resolves to hear the story straight from the prisoner and helps Jose leave his cell for a little while. Grateful Jose tells the tale of his love.

Jose speaks how he was a simple soldier. He remembers how he first spotted and fell in love with a magical woman. Her name was Carmen. He recalls how he met face-to-face with the contraband gang, and to his horror realized that their Gypsy leader was his own love, Carmen. It was his deep love for her that made him forgive.

All his hopes of happiness crumbled when he saw how easily she flirts with other men and concurs them, even the great Toreador himself could not resist her daring charms. Everything was foretelling misfortune, yet he again opened up his heart to his love. But to Carmen - he was just one of many. She wants to be free - free to live, free to roam, free to love... Jose is tormented. Carmen, sensing this, urges him to commit a crime. When she tears from him the very white flower she put behind his ear and spits into Jose's face... one more step... and Jose picks the knife, his competitor, Toreador, dropped earlier and jams into Carmen's body. The urchin wants to help Jose, but the soldiers come to do their duty and Jose is dead. There is no flower in the urchin's hand, but where Carmen placed her flower of love, the urchin puts the white paper with Jose's story and then removes the hat. Long hair folds out - the urchin is a girl, just like Carmen.

Every woman is evil.
Good she can be but twice -
Once, in the bed of love,
Once, on the bed where she dies.

Palladius
Prosper Mérimée's, Epigraph to Carmen, Novella, 1846

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