Cunard began its successful partnership with RealD in 2011 with the installation of RealD 3D projection technology, furthering the relationship later that year with screenings of the RealD and Royal Opera House co-production, “Carmen in 3D,” which proved hugely popular with Cunard guests. “Madam Butterfly 3D” is expected to draw equally large and appreciative audiences, when it is presented in the ship’s grand 450-seat theatre, Illuminations. This second co-production between RealD and the Royal Opera House gives viewers the best seat in the house at one of the world’s most prestigious venues for one of the world’s best loved operas. Combining the excitement of live staging with the immediacy of a feature film, “Madam Butterfly 3D” is a production designed to appeal to novices and opera buffs alike.
“The success of Cunard’s screenings of ‘Carmen in 3D’ over the last year has demonstrated the broad appeal of world-class opera productions on film to guests who may be regular opera-goers but who may equally not have had the time or opportunity to attend live performances,” said Peter Shanks, president of Cunard Line. “We’re sure ‘Madam Butterfly 3D’ will continue to play to full houses on board and add a new highlight to the wide-ranging program of on board speakers, workshops, and performances that sets Cunard apart.”
“Madam Butterfly 3D” takes audiences into the heart of this intimate production, immersing them in a tragic story of love, passion and betrayal. The story of a Japanese geisha’s love for an American naval officer moved Puccini to compose music of rare and sensual beauty, but also of heart-rending power, as Butterfly’s tragedy unfolds to its devastating conclusion. This work is one of opera’s most ravishing scores, featuring the famous Humming Chorus, Butterfly’s soaring aria “Un bel di vedremo” (“One fine day”), and such wonderfully lyrical passages as Cio-Cio-San’s first entrance, Pinkerton’s seduction of her, and Cio-Cio-San’s passionate farewell to her son.
Liping Zhang appears as the Butterfly of the title, Cio-Cio-San, a role for which she is acclaimed worldwide, and James Valenti makes an especially dashing Pinkerton, the young officer whose thoughtless toying with love is the catalyst for this tragic story. This revival of Moshe Leiser and Patrice Caurier’s elegant stage production offers the drama, the musical richness and the sheer enjoyment of great performance that make The Royal Opera truly world class.
Image Courtesy of Cunard Line