Gilliam Directs Monty Pythonish Opera

A rarely-performed opera is to be put on the London stage for the first time in 40 years with a Monty Python twist, as Terry Gilliam puts on a show complete with circus performers, 40-ft statues and a prosthetic cucumber phallus. Gilliam, the comedian, writer and animator, has directed a new production of Berlioz’s “Benvenuto Cellini” for the English National Opera, featuring his trademark colourful backdrop and “anarchic” undertones. Newly-released pictures from the opera’s dress rehearsal show an outlandish stage decorated as a fairground, overseen by a terrifying cartoon mouth and madcap circus performers.

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