David Cronenberg’s ‘The Fly’ comes to the stage in L.A.

Sept. 06, 2008 | 12:45 a.m.

EXCLUSIVE FIRST LOOK

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Los Angeles Times photographer Lawrence K. Ho took these amazing shots during a dress rehearsal for “The Fly,” the Los Angeles Opera production that is being directed by David Cronenberg, the master of venereal-horror cinema. The opera, conducted by Plácido Domingo, opens this Sunday. Will it create any , um, buzz? (Sorry, couldn’t resist.)

We’ll have the review by Times music critic Mark Swed right here for you on Monday.

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Cronenberg isn’t the only filmmaker who is moonlighting at the opera. Diane Haithman of The Times has an interesting piece on Cronenberg, Woody Allen and William Friedkin each bringing their camera sensibilities to the stage in Los Angeles.

Here’s some of what Cronenberg told Haithman:

As for Cronenberg, also an opera neophyte, the master of the macabre is directing “The Fly,” a new opera based on his 1986 picture, the 1957 short story by George Langelaan that inspired it and the 1958 film starring Vincent Price. A co-production of L.A. Opera and the Théâtre du Chatelet — Paris, the new work was composed by Howard Shore, who has written the music for a raft of Cronenberg movies, including “The Fly,” and whose other credits include the “Lord of the Rings” trilogy and Martin Scorsese’sThe Aviator.” The opera had its world premiere in Paris in July…

But don’t expect “The Fly” to pay literal homage to the silver screen in the form of on-stage projections. “I really wanted a theatrical experience. If I was going to do stage — and I’ve never done stage, never mind opera — I want that experience,” Cronenberg says. “I don’t want to muddy it with half-baked film-video stuff.

“In theory, there are many ways you can do close-ups on-stage. You can do it with lighting, but I wasn’t even thinking about that. I found that I could direct the singers just as I would direct actors on film.”

Check back here Monday for the review by Swed. If you’re interested in tickets check out the Los Angeles opera website right here.

– Geoff Boucher

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