The Royal Opera House (ROH) is to become the first opera company to have a production filmed in 3D. Francesca Zambello’s production of Carmen will be filmed this June in time for release this autumn in RealD-equipped cinemas.
RealD equipment has been used to screen such recent 3D hits as Avatar, Up and Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs. By working with RealD, the ROH hopes to reach a now growing and enthusiastic audience for 3D cinema around the world. At present there are over 5,000 RealD-equipped cinemas in over 51 countries.
Bizet’s opera Carmen is not only considered ideal for 3D cinema release because of its popular choruses and arias – including the title heroine’s 'Habanera' and Escamillo’s Toreador’s song – but also as presented in Zambello’s production is a spectacle richly populated with milling ‘extras’ (members of the chorus) and realistic settings.
Mezzo-soprano Christine Rice will sing the title role, with tenor Bryan Hymel as Don José and baritone Aris Argiris as Escamillo.