Opera Australia’s grand spectacle features fireworks and a 9.5-metre chandelier.

A floating, mirrored stage, a fireworks display and a 75-strong cast will come together for Opera Australia’s $11-million outdoor production of Verdi’s La Traviata, to be performed on the water of Sydney Harbour in 2012.

The show will open on March 24 for a three-week season in what the company hopes will become an annual extravaganza attracting tourists from around the world. Three events have been confirmed.

Audiences of up to 3,000 per night will be seated at Mrs Macquarie’s Chair, at the edge of the Royal Botanic Gardens and east of the Opera House, for one of the best views of the harbour and cityscape. There, viewers will be able to sip champagne as Violetta and Alfredo toast one another on stage.

Artistic director Lyndon Terracini today announced that Francesca Zembello will direct the monumental production, with soprano Emma Matthews and tenor Gianluca Terranova in the main roles.

“When Lyndon first mentioned the prospect of doing something in such a unique and spectacular setting, it appealed to me immediately”, says Zambello, who has previously directed Carmen,Prokofiev’s The Love of Three Orangesand Shostakovich’s Lady Macbeth of Mtsenskfor Opera Australia, as...