Francisco Negrin

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Francisco Negrin
Francisco Miguel Negrín Maggioros

(1963-06-05)June 5, 1963
OccupationStage director

Francisco Negrin (born June 5, 1963)[1] is an award winning stage director working in opera as well as in the world of stadium and arena based events. He is known for his musical[1] and cinematic approach to the staging of operas[2] of all periods, and particularly of pieces usually considered to be difficult to stage successfully. He is seen as a specialist of Handel operas[3] and is also characterised by a highly integrated use of dance as part of the dramaturgy.


Negrin was born in Mexico City, the son of Spaniard Francisco Negrin Diaz and Greek-Hawaiian Catherine Negrin (née Maggioros). He is the great-grandson of Juan Negrín y López, President of the Second Spanish Republic. When he was 9 years old, the family moved from Mexico to the family home in Antibes, France.[4]

After completing his secondary studies at the Lycée in Antibes (graduating with a mathematics and physics Baccalaureate), Negrin studied literature and film at the university of Aix-en-Provence, France,[4] while attending singing lessons at the Conservatoire d'Aix-en-Provence, where he was first in contact with the world of opera. He worked as an extra and later as an assistant director and stage manager at the Aix-en-Provence Festival (1982–83). There he met Swiss stage director François Rochaix [fr], who became his mentor and teacher. Negrin assisted him on many productions, including Seattle Opera's Ring cycle. Rochaix introduced him to the artist agent Lies Askonas. She recommended Negrin to Gerard Mortier who hired him as a staff assistant director at La Monnaie/De Munt in Brussels for two seasons (1984-1986).[5] There he continued to learn his trade assisting the directors Patrice Chéreau,[3] Karl-Ernst Herrmann [de], John Cox and Maurice Béjart. After leaving La Monnaie in 1986, Negrin moved to London where he started his career as a director. He has lived in Barcelona since 2003.[1]


Negrin and conductor Peter Ash put together a performing version of the unfinished La chute de la maison Usher by Debussy, which they staged at Christ Church, Spitalfields, in London. This performance came to the attention of the Southbank Centre which commissioned a production of the reconstruction for the Queen Elizabeth Hall in 1989. That was the start of an international directing career which includes the following productions:

Opera productions[edit]

L'Arbore di Diana. Gran Teatre del Liceu, Barcelona, 2009. Photo by Ariane Unfried
Salome. Palau de les Arts in Valencia, 2010. Photo by Bruno Poet
Thaïs. Theater Bonn, 2014. Photo by Francisco Negrin
La Clemenza di Tito. Gran Teatre del Liceu, Barcelona, 2006.
Rinaldo. Chicago Lyric Opera, 2012. Photo by Francisco Negrin
Production (Composer) Venue · location · dates
Il Trovatore (II) (Verdi) Royal Danish Opera · Copenhagen · September 2018
Opera de Monte-Carlo · Mónaco · April 2017
Salome (Strauss) ABAO · Bilbao · February 2018
Palau de les Arts · Valencia · June 2010
Il Trovatore (Verdi) Sferisterio Opera Festival · Macerata · July 2013 and 2016
Jérusalem (Verdi) Theatre Bonn · Bonn · January 2016
Idomeneo (Mozart) Aalto Musiktheater · Essen · November 2014
Mitridate (II) (Mozart) Drottningholm · Stockholm · August 2014
Thaïs (Massenet) Theatre Bonn · Bonn · May 2014
Alcina (Handel) Norwegian Opera · Oslo · January 2014
Royal Danish Opera · Copenhagen · February 2015
The Cunning Little Vixen (Janáček) Royal Danish Opera · Copenhagen · December 2012
Rinaldo (II) (Handel) Lyric Opera · Chicago · February 2012
L'Arbore di Diana (Martín y Soler) Opera National · Montpellier · November 2011
Teatro Real · Madrid · March 2010
Liceu · Barcelona · October 2009
Macbeth (Verdi) Opéra de Monte-Carlo · Monaco · April 2012
ABAO · Bilbao · February 2011
Opéra national du Rhin · Strasbourg and Mulhouse · April 2010
I Puritani (Bellini) Grand Théâtre · Geneva · January 2011
Greek National Opera · Athens · April 2009
De Nederlandse Opera · Amsterdam · February 2009
Una cosa rara (II) (Martín y Soler) Auditorio Narciso Yepes · Murcia · December 2010
Teatro Calderón · Valladolid · April 2010
Palau de les Arts · Valencia · February 2010
Werther (II) (Massenet) San Francisco Opera · San Francisco · September 2010
Alceste (Gluck) Santa Fe · Santa Fe Festival · August 2009
Partenope (II) (Handel) Royal Danish Opera · Copenhagen · October 2008
La Corte de Faraón (Lleó) Palau de les Arts · Valencia · June 2008
Orlando (Handel) Palau de les Arts · Valencia · February 2008
Royal Opera House · London · February 2007
Royal Opera House · London · October 2003
La Clemenza di Tito (Mozart) Leipzig Opera · Leipzig · January 2008
Liceu · Barcelona · October 2006
Norma (Bellini) Liceu · Barcelona · July 2007
Liceu · Barcelona · December 2002
Grand Théâtre · Geneva · September 1999
Teatre Victoria · Barcelona · February 1999
Die Lustige Witwe (Lehar) Leipzig Opera · Leipzig · December 2006
Mitridate (Mozart) The Alhambra · Granada · June 2006
Santa Fe Festival · Santa Fe · July 2001
Grand Théâtre · Geneva · November 1997
Orphée (II) (Glass) Royal Opera House · London · May 2005
Temistocle (J.C. Bach) Théâtre du Capitole · Toulouse · June 2005
Leipzig Opera · Leipzig · April 2005
Kafka's Trial (Ruders) Royal Danish Opera · Copenhagen · March 2005
Giulio Cesare (II) (Handel) Royal Danish Opera · Copenhagen · March 2005
Royal Danish Opera · Copenhagen · May 2002
Leonore (Beethoven) Teatro Comunale · Bologna · November 2004
Arabella (Strauss) Flemish Opera · Gent · October 2004
Opera North · Leeds · May 1999
Agrippina (Handel) Santa Fe Festival · Santa Fe · August 2004
Don Giovanni (Mozart) Glimmerglass · Cooperstown · July 2003
Partenope (I) (Handel) Lyric Opera · Chicago · February 2003
NYC Opera · New York · September 1998
Glimmerglass · Cooperstown · July 1998
Fidelio (Beethoven) Flemish Opera · Antwerp · October 2002
Giulio Cesare (I) (Handel) Dorothy Chandler Pavilion · L.A. · February 2001
Opera Queensland · Brisbane · October 1998
Opera Australia · Sydney · July 2000 / 1997 / June 1994
Rinaldo (I) (Handel) NYC Opera · New York · October 2000
Beatrix Cenci (Ginastera) Grand Théâtre · Geneva · September 2000
Der Freischütz (Weber) Lausanne Opera · Lausanne · May 2000
Théâtre des Champs-Élysées · Paris · December 1999
Orphée (I) (Glass) Royal Danish Opera · Copenhagen · March 1998
Venus (Schoeck) Grand Théâtre · Geneva · February 1997
Les contes d'Hoffman (Offenbach) Opera Australia · Sydney · September 1996
King Arthur (Purcell) Guildhall · London · November 1995
Una cosa rara (I) (Martín y Soler) Drottningholm · Stockholm · July 1995 / 1993
V.S. (MacMillan) Edinburgh International Festival · Edinburgh · August 1993
Tramway · Glasgow · May 1993
Tourist Variations (MacMillan) Edinburgh International Festival · Edinburgh · July 1993
Double Bill L'heure espagnole/La colombe (Ravel/Gounod) Guildhall · London · November 1992
Don Carlo (Verdi) Victoria State Opera · Melbourne · August 1992
Cosí Fan Tutte (Mozart) Seattle Opera · Seattle · May 1992
The Jewel Box (Mozart) Opera North · Leeds · February 1991
La Traviata (Verdi) Opera North · Leeds · September 1990
Orlando Paladino (Haydn) Garsington Festival · Garsington · June 1990
Janácek's Diary (Janáček) Purcell Room · London · April 1990
Werther (I) (Massenet) Opéra de Nice · Nice · March 1990
Usher (Debussy) São Carlos · Lisbon · September 1989
Queen Elizabeth Hall · London · December 1989
Spitalfields Festival · London · June 1989

Other work[edit]

AIMAG 2017 Opening Ceremony. Ashgabat, Turkmenistan. Photo by Francisco Negrin
AIMAG 2017 Opening Ceremony. Ashgabat, Turkmenistan. Photo by Francisco Negrin
Dubai World Cup 2017. Dubai, UAE. Photo by Francisco Negrin

Francisco Negrin is also a creative consultant for Balich Worldwide Shows, for whom he conceives stadium, arena and other commercial events and shows.

In 2017 Francisco Negrin conceived and directed the shows for the Dubai World Cup at the Meydan Rececourse. The shows took place in a performance area 1 kilometer wide with a 100 meter wide LED screen and 87 drones.

He also conceived and directed the opening ceremony of the 5th Asian Indoor and Martial Arts Games in Ashgabat, Turkmenistan. A massive stadium show involving more than 6000 performers.

For BWS he also wrote and directed the 2014 and 2015 Intimissimi On Ice shows at the Roman arena in Verona which featured opera singers, skating champions such as Stéphane Lambiel and Carolina Kostner and pop stars Pharrell Williams, Anastacia and Ellie Goulding.

Negrin worked with the rock band OK Go, conceiving the staging for a performance at London's The Roundhouse, using an installation by architect Ron Arad called "Curtain Call".[6] But the show was cancelled before opening.

In 2002, Francisco Negrin was a member of the board for London-based contemporary dance company Walker Dance.

Negrin collaborated with choreographer Fin Walker, composer Ben Park and film animator Damian Gascoigne on a site-specific performance called Two Stations, at the Queen Elisabeth Hall in London, commissioned by the Southbank Centre's Great Outdoors festival in 1994.

Negrin did the editing and visual effects for the music video of the song "Slow Me" for singer Mudibu, directed by Dean Loxton.

Negrin has given several master classes for opera singers, aiming to develop their acting skills. A series of master classes was devised by Negrin for the Royal Danish Opera Academy in Copenhagen in which the emphasis was on the whole process of conceiving and putting on a show, with participating singers having to write, stage, light and perform their own mini-operas or plays.


Francisco Negrin has worked in close collaboration with several design teams including:

Television and DVD[edit]

The following productions have been broadcast on TV: Venus, Les contes d'Hoffman, Una cosa rara (Drottninholm version), Una cosa rara (Valencia version) and Intimissimi on ice 2014 and 2105 were both broadcast in Italy and Spain.

The following productions have been released on DVD: I puritani (DVD and Blu-ray)[7], L'arbore di Diana[8], Giulio Cesare (Sydney version)[9], Giulio Cesare (Copenhagen version)[10], Partenope (Copenhagen version)[11], Norma (Barcelona version)[12] and Il Trovatore (Macerata version)[13].


Negrin's production of Orlando at The Royal Opera House in London was nominated for two Laurence Olivier Awards in 2004: "Best new opera production" and "Outstanding achievement in opera" (for Bejun Mehta).[14]

His production of Giulio Cesare for Opera Australia won several Green Room Awards in 1995, including best opera director and best opera production.

Negrin's second production of Giulio Cesare, the one for the Royal Danish opera in Copenhagen, won the Årets Reumert [dk] Award for best opera production in 2003. And Negrin's production of Partenope for the same company was nominated for the award in 2009.[15]


  1. ^ a b c Federico Figueroa (Mexico City, October 2004) "Un mexicano en el mundo" pro ópera magazine, archived here (in Spanish)
  2. ^ Nick Kimberley (Sydney, November 2004) Film director manqué About the House magazine, archived here
  3. ^ a b Martin Buzacott (Brisbane, September 1998) "Fit for a rare treat", The Courier-Mail, archived here
  4. ^ a b André Peyregne (Nice, March 3, 1990) Il monte Werther à l'opera de Nice, Nice Matin, archived here
  5. ^ La Monnaie/de Munt programme books 1984-86
  6. ^ "Curtain Call homepage". Roundhouse. Retrieved 2012-10-03.
  7. ^ Opus Arte, 2012
  8. ^ Dynamic-Fundación del gran teatro del Liceu, 2010
  9. ^ 2005 Euroarts Music International Gmbh
  10. ^ harmonia mundi s.a. 2007
  11. ^ 2009, Decca Classics, Decca music group, a Universal Music company
  12. ^ Arthaus Musik Gmbh 2009
  13. ^ Dynamic, 2017
  14. ^ "Previous Winners: Olivier Winners 2004". Olivier Awards. Retrieved 2012-10-03.
  15. ^ "Årets Reumert". Retrieved 2012-10-03.

External links[edit]