See Paul Mescal Make Music Debut With ‘Slip Away’ From ‘Carmen’

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Mescal Music

Actor and Melissa Barrera star in Benjamin Millepied-directed cinematic update of classic opera

Paul Mescal makes his debut as a recording artist on the soundtrack for Carmen, which stars the actor and Melissa Barrera in an update of the classic Georges Bizet opera.

In a clip from the Benjamin Millepied-directed film, Mescal delivers the track — one of the original songs co-written by Oscar-nominated composer Nicholas Britell — on acoustic guitar.

“When Benjamin first approached me about Carmen, I remember feeling strongly that I didn’t want to ‘update’ or ‘re-arrange’ any of Bizet’s music. There are already so many incredible adaptations of Carmen,” Britell said in a statement. 

“We wanted our approach to be quite different: to write an original score and original songs, imagining this as a Carmen from a parallel universe. This approach also felt right given Benjamin’s instincts to take an experimental and dream-based approach to the feeling of the film.”

Millepied added, “Nicholas and I spoke about the music for the film for years before we began production. The original Carmen evokes a complex tapestry of cultures. We wanted to include those as well as remain open to and discover other influences that emerged from our own exploration. I asked Nicholas to write a few pieces ahead of time—dances and songs, but also score. His music inspired such visceral imagery and atmosphere. Our collaboration was a dance of sorts. The result is a rich landscape of music, fully connected to the narrative and visuals.”

The Carmen soundtrack also features songs co-written by songwriters Taura Stinson and Julieta Venegas and rapper and Dr. Dre collaborator Tracy “The D.O.C.” Curry, who returns to music for the film (he also has a co-starring role).


“I was introduced to the idea of working on Carmen by my good friend Erykah Badu, who put me in contact with Nicholas,” The D.O.C. said. “I hadn’t recorded in nearly two decades, but was excited to work with such a decorated artist. It was a real pleasure collaborating with Nicholas who has an amazing ear and is a joy to be around. Benjamin was very supportive and creative with how he helped me understand my role and what the character was trying to accomplish. The action was colorful and exciting and had the energy of an early NWA record. I felt right at home.”

Carmen is in theaters in Los Angeles and New York this weekend, while the soundtrack has a wider release (a.k.a. streaming everywhere) now.

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