The world premiere of Ben Hur Live in London features a cast of 400 performers and 100 animals, including horses, camels, donkeys, chickens, falcons and eagles.
The highlight of the show, the famous chariot scene, features five "quadrigas" (or chariots) racing around the arena floor pulled by specially trained thoroughbred horses, who together with a team of trainers and charioteers, will have undergone 12 months of intensive training.
Created by German producer Franz Abraham, Ben Hur Live has been in development for 15 years and includes a combination of light, sound, water, wind and pyrotechnic effects in a show performed in the round, like an ancient arena. Its opening coincides with the 50th anniversary of the 1959 film version starring Charlton Heston.
Ben Hur Live is based on the 1880 novel Ben Hur – A Tale Of Christ by Lew Wallace. The tale portrays the life of the Jewish prince Judah Ben Hur in the beginning of the 1st century. Unjustly condemned for an alleged assassination attempt on the Roman governor, the prince must overcome his new position as a gallery slave to seek revenge.
Stewart Copeland, founding member of The Police, is the live narrator of the show.
The O2 Website
Please click here for the Culturekiosque review of Robert Hossein's spectacle 'Ben-Hur' in a Paris football stadium.
Detailed schedule information: