Introducing you to opera

How should one be introduced to opera?  It’s a question I’ve thought about, one I have seen tossed around lately.

  1. American opera educator & broadcaster Fred Plotkin was asked the question “how does one become an opera buff?” Here are his seven steps.
  2. The Canadian Opera Company has launched a new free series for adults entitled “Opera Insights”, designed to connect audiences to the 2015-2016 season. The details of the program along with bios of all the presenters and participants can be found at
  3. And then there’s my own course at the University of Toronto’s School of Continuing Studies, called The Most Popular Operas.  I have taught it for several years, adjusting it each year to include the operas being offered by the COC & Opera Atelier,  with a special emphasis on the operas that are most popular.  Are they “the best” or is something else at work in making them popular?  Some of you love a particular opera, while others love a particular singer, so there is also the question of opera as an artform vs opera as a vehicle for singers. . If we can’t reconcile these two pathways we can enjoy the contradictions between each point of view.  But at the very least the discovery of what we love is a great way to get started.

Most Popular Operas begins Sept 16th.

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