According to the Archives of Girard-Perregaux, the present watch was sold in 2007 with the actual black matte dial added by special request of the owner, rendering it possibly a unique piece.
Consigned by an important private collector and fresh to the market the present “Opera Three” is preserved in like new overall condition. It is furthermore distinguished by the black matte dial as opposed to the better known engine-turned silver version of the model. Made in an exceedingly small series only, the Opera Three represents a rare find for the aficionados of haute horlogerie and classical music alike.
Opera Three is the third and most complicated timepiece of Girard-Perregaux’s Haute Horlogerie “Opera” series. Launched in 2003, this extremely refined musical watch indicates the passing time with a melody, the mechanism working on the principles of a music box. The heart is a miniature carillon with a keyboard of 20 blades and a drum set with 150 hand-assembled pins. While turning the drum lifts the keyboard keys to play a complete melody.
Two small lever in the band of the case allow to choose between two melodies: Mozart’s “A Little Night Music” or Tchaikovsky’s “No Great Love”. A second lever with three positions disconnects the sound or activates the melody to play upon demand or on every hour.
Opera Three represents the manufacturers’ savoir-faire in terms of musical watches, starting at the beginning of the 19th century with the celebrated Genevan watchmaker Jean-François Bautte, associated to the origins of Girard-Perregaux.
Only the most talented watchmakers master the development of the miniature mechanism, devoting months to crafting these unique pieces, from the machining of the components to the final control, via bevelling of the parts, polishing, movement decoration, assembly, mounting the dial and hands and then fitting the case.