Carmen change at Covent Garden due to pregnancy

Carmen change at Covent Garden due to pregnancy


norman lebrecht

September 20, 2017

The  German soprano Anett Fritsch has withdrawn from singing Micaëla in the ROH Barrie Kosky Carmen due to an anticipated happy event. She will be replaced by the Russian Kristina Mkhitaryan (pictured).

Once upon a time, when pregnancy was coyly referred to as a ‘happy event’ or ‘a certain condition’, sopranos sang on until the last moment and sometimes gave birth in the wings. That’s how Malibran was born.

We now live in safer, healthier times.


And after Brexit, we may hear a lot of British Micaelas.



  • AB says:

    Well, knowing that in this production the only set is a huge stairs – and the singers have to climb up or run down – it is totally understandable that Ms. Fritsch in “certain condition” would not be able to stay fit enough for singing well. I, personally, wish her all the best.

  • Sanity says:

    The final months of pregnancy can give a soprano some of her best ever singing. In recent times, Miricioiu sang at Covent Garden twice whilst heavily pregnant.

    It is more likely that the set is the obstacle to her taking on the production, rather than it suddenly being considered unhealthy for a woman to sing late into her pregnancy – a somewhat patronising view…

  • Jon says:

    In 2010 Diana Damrau sang in Die schweigsame Frau in Munich when she was 8 months pregnant, although she later withdrew from Robert le Diable at the Opera House when she was pregnant again in 2012.

  • Opera Spook says:

    I recall the lovely American soprano Janai Brugger, soon to be seen here again as Pamina in the ROH’s October FLUTE performances, made her Met debut as Liu when she was six months pregnant with her first baby!

  • Thomasina says:

    Every pregnant woman has her situation. We never judge because she continues to work or not.

  • Theodore McGuiver says:

    Anett Fritsch withdrawing is a happy event in itself.

  • Colin says:

    Flights of stairs in opera? Groundbreaking!!!

  • John says:

    I’m willing to bet that all the snark attacks are coming from men. In any event, who the hell’s business is it anyway?

  • MD says:

    Pregnancy can have dire side effects for example, Flatus gigantus!

  • Theodore McGuiver says:

    And after Brexit, we may hear a lot of British Micaelas.

    And there’s not much wrong with that, either. Many excellent singers in the UK…