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The number of opera houses around the world and the high attendance rates show that opera an art form that is more popular than ever.
The music of the most popular operas is so highly esteemed, it can stand endless revivals.
Tender Mercies is a very low-budget film, but it was a huge budget compared to anything I had done in Australia. My fee for Tender Mercies was something like five times all of my Australian films combined.
Quite a few operas are still being commissioned around the world, although nothing apart from audience popularity can ensure more than a few performances.
Perhaps the most difficult thing is shooting scenes set 6,000 feet up in the mountains of Mexico.
On stage, the audience watches from a fixed viewpoint and the director cannot retake something he doesn't like. It has to work straight through.
It's not enough to hit the notes. There is no point in the singers just standing there and sounding wonderful if they're not connecting with the characters they are portraying.
It is essential to do everything possible to attract young people to opera so they can see that it is not some antiquated art form but a repository of the most glorious music and drama that man has created.
In silent movies, they tended to put the camera down, and everybody walked in front of it and acted, and then they all walked off. Cutting was quite infrequent.
In opera, everyone's watching from a fixed viewpoint, and that really challenges you. Lighting, the sets, stage groupings, the music-but doesn't relate too much to film.
In my view, the operas of Carlisle Floyd will find a place in the permanent repertoire.
In Australia, they set up a special fund to kick films off. It was quite an enlightened sort of move. You could go to this government bureau with scripts and and get finance for films.
I'd really been interested in opera when I was about 16, and I really like staging them.
Dont Look Back
Men And Women
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