Opera Australia aims to make opera accessible to all Australians – regardless of where they live. To make productions as enjoyable as possible for everyone, all of our touring shows are sung in English. A chamber orchestra performs the music, the cast is fully costumed, wigged and made-up, and a specially-designed set is
assembled and professionally lit to create a unique opera experience in every community.
In 2018 and 2019, Opera Australia will be touring a stunning new production of Puccini’s Madame Butterfly, directed by critically acclaimed John Bell.
In 2018 Opera Australia will be continuing their partnership with NECOM with their incredibly successful community engagement program, the Regional Children’s Chorus. This program rolled out for the first time to great acclaim in 2014 with The Magic Flute and gaining momentum in 2016 with The Marriage of Figaro, local children are offered a memorable and unique experience to perform with some of the country’s finest professional opera singers and musicians.
In 2018, a local child will also be cast to play as the non-speaking character “Sorrow”. NECOM students in past years have gone on to perform in headline productions, and have been offered scholarships to study with the professionals at Opera Australia in Sydney.
It is always an exciting time when Opera Australia come to Armidale. Much thought and energy is put into making the event an educational experience for as many people as possible.
Opera Australia and NECOM prepare the Children's Chorus by supplying learning materials, including sheet music, backing tracks and design plans.
Opera Australia Children’s Chorus Master will meet and train the local Choir Leader and the children’s chorus over a few days, approximately one week prior to the performance. The children will learn the music, be taught a wider understanding of opera and live performance and also be given some simple basic direction and stagecraft. The children's chorus will then join the Opera Australia performers when the tour comes to town, being rehearsed into the performance on the day.
Opera Australia also offers Education Workshops for local secondary students. Featuring principal singers, members of the orchestra and members of the crew, the workshops demonstrate every aspect of opera. Scenes from the show are played out, and the artists share their experience of performing life. The workshops are of particular appeal to Music and Drama students but are informative for anyone interested in opera or the performing arts. They not only provide insight into the exciting world of an Opera Australia tour, but they can stimulate or enhance a valuable interest in the arts amongst young people.
NECOM will present Opera Australia's Madame Butterfly on Thursday 9 August, 2018. Save the date!