Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Next Mammoth TV-Opera Project: Les contes de Hoffmann in 3D

And so the world saw Rigoletto from Mantua last weekend. To me it was yet another proof that opera cannot be adapted to look like a TV-show or a movie.  Opera belongs to theaters -- that's where the genuine magic happens, and the best approximation to that experience are the DVD recordings of the shows presented in theaters.

Photo taken at Stohrer (pastry shop in the Montorgueil street in Paris)

The attempts (futile?)  to convert opera and present it like a movie will continue. We learn that the next big TV-project is Les contes de Hoffmann. Good news is that the adaptation will not be directed by an opera newbie, but by Robert Carsen. Less good news is that Carsen has no experience in directing movies.

It will be filmed in HD and in 3D, in 4 cities: Paris, Venice, Prague, and Milan. The project is a collaboration of Opéra National de Paris, Teatro alla Scala, Prague Estates Theatre, and Teatro La Fenice, and the shooting will start in 2012, involving more than 1000 walk-ons, 50 dancers, large chorus and orchestra. The cast is not fixed yet.

Good luck with that!


  1. Hi Opera Cake,

    To be honest, I really do prefer to experience opera via compact discs and in the privacy of my own home, mainly because I can adjust/increase the volume to my taste.

    Does this make me a philistine ?

    (I go to the opera house maybe 3 or 4 times a years on average to see my favourites like 'Falstaff', 'Gotterdammerung' or 'Pelleas')

    Does this make me a philistine ?

  2. oh come on - Carsen doesn't need experience!