Behind the scenes of Salome: How to make a severed head
A sneak preview of our new film showing our Prop Department creating the head of John the Baptist.
Props artist Steve Jolley working on the severed head prop used in Salome © David Kaplowitz/ROH 2012
In this year’s production, John the Baptist, previously sung by Johan Reuter in 2010 – will be played by Egils Silins. Over the last couple of months, prop artist Steve Jolley has been busy working to create a new head ‘double’ for the Latvian singer and we have filmed the process.
Our short film will show the grisly head developing from an inert lump of clay to a blood-spurting, severed stump.
Taking note of everything from the shape of the inner-nostrils, to the depth of the wrinkles, to the thickness of the eyebrows, the Props team have worked with painstakingly to produce a convincing likeness of the singer.Our film will show the transformation stage-by-stage and offer a unique insight into the extensive work that goes on behind the scenes at the Royal Opera House
Take a look at our image gallery for a further glimpse into this fascinating – and slightly gruesome – process: