War, deceit, courage and love kick off the Royal Opera House Live cinema season 2016/17 in a brand new production of Bellini’s masterpiece Norma. The new production is set in contemporary times drawing on themes of oppression, religious fanaticism and intolerance. An atmospheric staging allows for the rich fusion of music, dramatic power and world-leading performances to take the cinema audience on a powerful, and relevant, journey.

The title role of Norma is sung by soprano Sonya Yoncheva, a high priestess who betrays her religion to have a secret love and family with her enemy Pollione, sung by Joseph Calleja. Repressed by the inflexible laws of her religion, the soul defining central character is forced towards one fatal solution.

Director Àlex Ollé brings to life the tensions of religion and politics in a contemporary setting.  Royal Opera Music Director Antonio Pappano conducts the powerful score, leading the chorus and all-star cast through the sensational arias and choruses.

An encore screening takes place on Sunday 2 October at 2pm. Norma is closely followed by Mozart’s glorious opera Così fan tutte on Monday 17 October at 6.30pm before the first ballet of the Season Anastasia is broadcast live on Wednesday 2 November at 7.15pm.