Turandot : an opera in three acts is the next program in the Arts on Film series to be screened this Wednesday 28 March in Arts.

Opera Australia, c2006

Opera Australia, c2006

This is Graeme Murphy’s spectacular and much acclaimed production for Opera Australia, of the classic opera by Giacomo Puccini.   It features Ealynn Voss, Kenneth Collins, Amanda Thane, Donald Shanks and artists of Opera Australia.  With The Australian Opera and Ballet Chorus, and the State Orchestra of Victoria (now Orchestra Victoria), conducted by Carlo Felice Cillario.  Directed by Graeme Murphy.  The opera is sung in Italian with English subtitles, and was recorded live at the State Theatre, Victorian Arts Centre in 1991.

Promotional poster for Giacomo Puccini's opera "Turandot", on 25 April 1926, by Musshi.  Courtesy Wikimedia Commons.

Promotional poster for Giacomo Puccini's opera "Turandot", on 25 April 1926, by Musshi. Courtesy Wikimedia Commons.

Turandot is a Persian word and name meaning “the daughter of Turan”, Turan being a region of Central Asia which used to be part of the Persian Empire.   The opera tells the story of  Turandot, the beautiful but icy Chinese princess, who will only marry the man who can correctly answer her three riddles. Calaf answers them and bargains with Turandot that if she learns his name before dawn he will forfeit his life.


Graeme Murphy’s 1991 production of Turandot will be revived in April as part of Opera Australia’s Melbourne season.  Murphy’s innovative reinventions of opera and ballet classics as a choreographer and director, recently included Prokofiev’s Romeo and Juliet for The Australian Ballet.  This premiered in Melbourne in 2011 and is currently touring other Australian capitals as part of the company’s 50th Anniversary season.  His new ballet The Narrative of Nothing and an early classic Beyond Twelve will feature in the Infinity and Icons triple bill programs this year.  His 2002 version of Swan Lake premieres at New York’s Lincoln Centre in June.  Opera Australia is also reviving the stunning 2009 production of Verdi’s Aida in Sydney in July.

Graeme Murphy, Choreographer-Director

Graeme Murphy, Choreographer-Director

Turandot commences at 12.00 noon and concludes and 2.10 pm (approx). It will be held in the Arts Listening-Viewing Room. Enter via the Arts Reading Room and Audio-visual Centre (from Trescowthick Information Centre). Admission is free. No bookings required, but come early as seating is limited. Enjoy!


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