Fireworks lit up the Sydney skyline above an opera stage Friday night, as part of Opera Australia’s new outdoor production of ‘Carmen’!
This new production brings all the drama of the opera to a watertop stage, with the Sydney skyline as its backdrop. Handa Opera on Sydney Harbour: Carmen, running for three weeks from 22 March – 12 April.
A huge stage measuring 32m x 24m resembles a blood-stained bullfighting ring, backed by six red Hollywood-style letters spelling out CARMEN, measuring 9m high and 25m wide – impossible to miss as they beam across Sydney Harbour.
A cast of 154 performers had four weeks to rehearse, and only seven days on the steeply raked stage. Opera Australia’s costume department has produced 284 costumes. Two cranes, each 26m high, move giant props on and off the stage throughout the production, including a life-sized tank and a truck.
Lyndon Terracini, artistic director of Opera Australia said, “This hotly-anticipated event of ours has everyone talking. From around the harbour’s edge in Sydney, you can now see the bright lights and letters of ‘CARMEN.’
Carmen is directed by Gale Edwards who brings this Carmen forward to mid 20th century Spain. Set designer Brian Thomson and costume designer, Julie Lynch, are responsible for the show inspired by 1950s Hollywood glamour.