The Israeli Opera brings the grandeur of Carmen to Masada
The majestic performance will be the third major opera staged at the foot of the ancient Israeli plateau.
The Israeli Opera returns to Masada this week for what has become an annual festival revered by aficionados and the uninitiated alike.
Following its enormous success in staging Nabucco and Aida there over the last two years, the Israeli Opera is bringing Carmen to the foot of the ancient plateau with hopes of surpassing even the grandeur of those previous performances.
This is no small endeavor.
It takes 750 stage-related personnel, including the soloists, conductor Daniel Oren, the Rishon Letzion Symphony Orchestra, the Israeli Opera Choir, the Encore Youth Choir, the Tel Aviv Philharmonic choir, flamenco dancers, and a stage crew, along with 10 horses, 10 donkeys, 220 security personnel, police officers, ushers, 200 waiters serving 50,000 portions of food and 300,000 liters of water, not to mention the 180 buses and 50 vans specifically sanctioned for the event, as well as 25 equipment carriages and 3,000 costumes.
Then there are the total 50,000 guests who will take their places (on different nights, of course) in the 7,580 specially created venue, in front of 3,500 meter stage, illuminated by 30 tons of lighting fixtures. Best not to forget the NIS 500-1,300 paid by each of the aforementioned guests to witness such an event.
The set of the opera, built to look like a giant scene from the Wild West, is cast against the magnificent Masada view.
Small endeavor it is not. But grandeur, surely there will be.
The show opens at 9:30 P.M. on Thursday June 8, with an additional four shows Saturday-Tuesday. For more information, check out the Israeli Opera's website.