Never in the history of romance were two lovers more star-crossed than Shakespeare’s passionate Romeo and Juliet. This universal story has been adapted in countless plays and films, in popular culture and in dance, but perhaps no medium better expresses the love, longing and ultimate tragedy of this fated pair than Gounod’s sweeping and supreme opera. Replete with ecstatic French melodies, this heartbreakingly beautiful production arrives just in time for Valentine’s Day. Rising international stars Stephen Costello and Ailyn Perez - real life spouses and Academy of Vocal Arts alumni - return home to Philadelphia in the title roles. Director Manfred Schweigkofler conceives this new production that paints the Capulets and Montagues as dueling fashion houses. Against a backdrop of models, paparazzi and high style, Romeo and Juliet’s love for each other unfolds to its deadly conclusion.