Nicky Spence (c) Bertie Watson

Samson et Dalila

26 May19 June 2022
The performance lasts about 2 hours 40 minutes, including one interval.
Main Stage
Opera and music

Pious restraint comes face to face with sensuous hedonism in Camille Saint-Saëns’s grand-opera retelling of the Bible story of Samson and Delilah.

Multi-Olivier Award winning director Richard Jones returns to The Royal Opera to stage this spectacular fin-de-siècle masterpiece, not performed at Covent Garden since 2004. Elīna Garanča stars as the Philistine Dalila, Nicky Spence as the inspiring Jewish hero Samson and Antonio Pappano conducts the full forces of the Orchestra of the Royal Opera House.

With superb singing in solos and duets of great intimacy and fervour, gorgeous music with thrilling orchestral interludes, and splendid choral numbers for the Royal Opera Chorus – this will be an opera evening to remember.

Sung in French with English surtitles

Season Principal

Mrs Aline Foriel-Destezet

Position of Music Director Maestro Antonio Pappano generously supported by

Mrs Susan A. Olde OBE

Generous philanthropic support from

Julia and Hans Rausing, Gini and Richard Gabbertas, Alan and Caroline Howard, Aud Jebsen, Rena and Sandro Lavery, Trifon and Despina Natsis, Simon and Virginia Robertson, The Maestro's Circle, the American Friends of Covent Garden and two anonymous donors.



Cast may vary depending on date. Go to dates and prices to view casting.


CompanyThe Royal Opera

MusicCamille Saint-Saëns

LibrettoFerdinand Lemaire

DirectorRichard Jones

Set designerHyemi Shin

Costume designerNicky Gillibrand

Lighting designerAndreas Fuchs

Movement directorLucy Burge


There is lift access and step-free routes to over 100 seats in the Stalls Circle, Balcony and Amphitheatre. There are 10 steps or fewer to seats in the Stalls Circle, Balcony, Amphitheatre and the Donald Gordon Grand Tier. Seats in the Orchestra stalls are accessible by 9 steps or more. There is an Assisted Hearing Facility, and we produce Audio Introductions for most Main Stage Events.

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Join our free Access Scheme to book accessible seating or wheelchair space options in our auditoria and event spaces. Email or telephone +44 (0)20 7304 4000 for pricing and availability information, to book tickets or to register. Find out more about Accessibility at the Royal Opera House



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