ROME — The music swelled, heavenly clouds began to fade and impossibly bright rays of lights began to cut through the theater.
And then it stopped.
The spectacle’s artistic director, Marco Balich, waited patiently. “What’s going on?” he asked his creative producer.
“Power outage,” responded the producer, Stefania Opipari. Later, she explained that it was the first time that all of the lasers, projectors and special effects of the multimedia production, “Universal Judgment: Michelangelo and the Secrets of the Sistine Chapel,” had been turned on at the same time. “It was a minor problem,” she said. “We fixed it.”
The debut of “Universal Judgment” was just over a week away, but if Mr. Balich, who is also the show’s producer, was nervous, you’d never have known it.
He has a lot at stake on the production, which is set to debut on March 15. He has booked the capital’s former symphony hall for at least a year. If it’s successful, it would become Rome’s first permanent theatrical production along the lines of Broadway in New York or the West End in London.
The Vatican has approved the project, on the condition that it would respect the artistic, religious and spiritual values that the Sistine Chapel embodies. Mr. Balich has to live up to that promise.