EduCom

The Measure of Operatic Success

Give a ten-year-old math student a tape measure and she might grow up to become the next great set designer. LA Opera’s Education and Community Engagement Department knows that a lifelong fascination with the arts can take root one inch, one shoe box or one classroom at a time.

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From the Classroom to the Stage: Local Teens Perform in an Opera They Helped Create

Over the past two years, 50 adventuresome students from Zoo Magnet High School helped create a new opera. Next week, they will perform the show for the first time. Inspired by the creative process and the adrenaline rush of performing, these teens—even the ones who originally may have resisted the idea of enjoying opera—are now embracing their power as artists and storytellers.

Students perform in The Wreck of the Miranda

Students perform in The Wreck of the Miranda

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LA Opera 90012: Inspiring a Love of Opera

Opera is larger than life. It’s full of dramatic stories told through extraordinary music. The stage is populated by fascinating characters brought to life by beautiful voices. While the stage is transformed into a different world, the audience finds themselves transformed as well — their laughter, tears, gasps and applause are a vital part of an opera performance.

LA Opera’s 2006 production of “Hansel and Gretel.” (Photo: Robert Millard)

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An Inside Look at LA Opera’s Professional Development Day

Giving Opera “Campers” the tools to engage in their communities is one of the important missions of LA Opera’s Opera Camp, an annual three-week intensive where youth from all around Los Angeles gather to sing, dance and learn how to tackle deeper social issues using the power of music and acting. Last week, we enjoyed the culminating performances of our 2018 session with The White Bird of Poston and The Prospector. Though we spent ample time teaching the kids about opera, we also took the time to teach our LA Opera Teaching Artists as well.

LA Opera Teaching Artists participating in Opera Camp's Professional Development Day on July 23

LA Opera Teaching Artists participating in Opera Camp’s Professional Development Day on July 23

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Three Things You May Not Know About Opera Camp!

Every summer, the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion fills up with students ages 9-17 for LA Opera’s Opera Camp. This year, the program has expanded and we have over 70 campers learning everything there is to know about opera. Over the next three weeks, they will present TWO fully-staged operas for friends, family and the community.

Eli Villanueva, Resident Stage Director for LA Opera’s Education and Community Engagement, with kids from Opera Camp 2018.

Eli Villanueva, Resident Stage Director for LA Opera’s Education and Community Engagement, with kids from Opera Camp 2018.

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Check Out Our 2018/19 Family Programs!

At LA Opera, we believe that a person is never too young or too old for great stories set to gorgeous music. Thanks to our Education and Community Engagement programs, we are able to offer an array of family programs that make opera performances accessible to all ages. Take a look below at the family programs we have planned for the 2018/19 season as we strive to create your family’s greatest memories!

Elementary In-School Opera

Elementary In-School Opera

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Opera By The Numbers: How We’ve Reached New Audiences Through Education and Community Programs!

It’s no secret that we’re passionate about opera. Here at LA Opera, we want as many people as possible to experience this remarkable art form. We invite scores of school children into free performances and provide specially priced tickets for community groups at every mainstage performance.  We also travel to schools and teach children to perform an opera for their community.

Baritone Cedric Berry at KUSC’s playground pop-up (Photo: Tony Roman)

Baritone Cedric Berry at KUSC’s playground pop-up (Photo: Tony Roman)

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Why We Sing: LA Opera and City of Hope

Through the combined efforts of community venues and LA Opera, the public has access to opera throughout Los Angeles County, with recitals tailored to each individual community. Performances take place at a variety of spaces including libraries, museums, hospitals, community centers, senior centers and outdoor venues.

Read about LA Opera artist Ashley Faatoalia’s experience singing at a previous concert at City of Hope, in anticipation of an upcoming concert on June 15.

LA Opera artist Ashley Faatoalia

LA Opera artist Ashley Faatoalia

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The College Advisory Committee – Inspiring the Next Generation of Opera Lovers

The College Advisory Committee invites graduate and undergraduate students to be a part of Team Opera! They volunteer at events, attend exclusive master classes and backstage tours, all while learning about potential careers in the arts. Committee members input is a vital part of how we plan future college programming at LA Opera. Get to know two of our members below!

The 2017/18 LA Opera College Advisory Committee (Photo: Anabel Romero/LA Opera)

The 2017/18 LA Opera College Advisory Committee (Photo: Anabel Romero/LA Opera)

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The Zarzuela Project: Learning About Opera Through Performance

In a few short weeks, members of the Zarzuela Project will take the stage and sing their hearts out at the El Pueblo Historic Monument, their voices echoing down historic Olvera Street. But how did this group come together in the first place? And what is the Zarzuela Project?

LA Opera singers perform in Education and Community Engagement's The Zarzuela Project

Members of the Zarzuela Project, with lead teaching artist and director Melodee Fernandez (center, in red), performing at the El Pueblo de Los Angeles Historical Monument. (Photo Credit: Jennifer Babcock)

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From the Opera Stage to a Recital Tour: Getting to Know Young Artist Taylor Raven

Although mezzo-soprano Taylor Raven has only been a member of LA Opera’s Domingo-Colburn-Stein Young Artist Program for a year, she’s already made her company debut as the  Vanderdendur in Candide. As the treacherous ship captain who double crosses Candide, she chewed up the stage. Later this month, she appears with Artist in Residence Matthew Aucoin and the other Domingo-Colburn-Stein YAPs on-tour in “Verdi: Bel Canto and Beyond.”

Domingo-Colburn-Stein Young Artist Taylor Raven (center) as the Venderdendur in LA Opera's 2018 production of Candide (Photo: Ken Howard)

Domingo-Colburn-Stein Young Artist Taylor Raven (center) as the Vanderdendur in LA Opera’s 2018 production of Candide (Photo: Ken Howard)

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Resistance and Remembrance: A Holocaust Survivor’s Mission to Share Opera

Fifty plus children are lined up onstage, holding hands and singing a victory march at the end of the children’s opera Brundibár as part of LA Opera’s Opera Camp. At the center, holding hands and singing with the same energy as the children, is Holocaust survivor Ela Weissberger. Before her passing last month, she traveled around the world to attend nearly every performance of Brundibár. Her story has been an inspiration and a driving force behind Opera Camp.

Ela Weissberger onstage with Opera Camp students in 2013

Ela Weissberger onstage with Opera Camp participants in 2013.

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Catching the “Opera Bug”: From School to the Mainstage at LA Opera

Ever wondered how children get the “opera bug”? For 10 year-old Jesse McBride, it all started with a visit to his school by LA Opera. In 2017, LA Opera brought their Elementary In-School Opera program to Rockdale Elementary, where Jesse attended 4th grade. For 5 weeks, he and his classmates worked to learn their roles as the chorus in The Legend of Cannery Row, culminating in a performance for their fellow students and families.

Photo: Taso Papadakis

Photo: Taso Papadakis

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Community Opera Brings Families Closer Together

On Friday, March 16, over 400 members of the Los Angeles community will come together to perform Jonah and the Whale.  The production will feature professional opera singers alongside community performers of all ages and experience levels.

The Community Opera provides an opportunity for people from all over Los Angeles to come together and create art. But it also provides an opportunity for families to get to know each other. And carve out a space to learn about themselves together.

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Families at rehearsal for Jonah and the Whale

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Five Things To Know Before You See ‘Jonah and the Whale’

On March 16 and 17, LA Opera Education Department mounts the return of Jonah and the Whale, an opera for audiences of all ages by composer Jack Perla and librettist Velina Hasu Houston. Following in the tradition of previous Cathedral Project productions, Jonah and the Whale features professional opera singers in the leading roles and members of the LA Opera Orchestra, performing along with a large group of community-based performers drawn from schools, churches, choirs and orchestras from every part of Los Angeles.

Interested in attending? Here for five elements of the upcoming production that make it worth seeing! You can purchase tickets by clicking here.

A scene from LA Opera Education Department's 2014 production of Jonah and the Whale (Photo: Robert Millard ©)

A scene from LA Opera’s 2014 production of Jonah and the Whale (Photo: Robert Millard)

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Helping Children Find Their Voice at Saturday Mornings at the Opera

Saturday Mornings at the Opera are special days. Young audiences walk into a Dorothy Chandler Pavilion that has been transformed into a creative play-land.  The downstairs lobby is full of art, music, and dance workshops. Stern Grand Hall upstairs has been filled with comfy pillows, perfect seats for little opera fans. And today, the children are in for a special treat: singing lessons from an LA Opera artist.

LA Opera artists perform at Saturday Mornings at the Opera (Photo: Taso Papadakis)

LA Opera artists perform at Saturday Mornings at the Opera (Photo: Taso Papadakis)

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This Isn’t a Lesson, It’s Entertainment!: Introducing Young Audiences to Opera

When tenor Nathan Granner and mezzo-soprano Joanna Lynn-Jacobs step on stage for Saturday Mornings at the Opera it will be their first time performing with LA Opera. But it won’t be their first time performing together.  They have spent the last couple of years performing together as classmates at the Herb Alpert School of Music at UCLA. Both are excited to use their skills and training to share their love of opera with young audiences.

Tenor Nathan Granner and mezzo-soprano Joanna Lynn-Jacobs in Who Wants To Be an Opera Singer?

Tenor Nathan Granner and mezzo-soprano Joanna Lynn-Jacobs in Who Wants To Be an Opera Singer?

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Holiday Caroling Generates an Astonishing Response from an ICU Patient

When the nurses at Harbor-UCLA Medical Center had their morning huddle in preparation for another day in the ICU, they knew it was going to be a special day. While their normal days involve treating patients in crisis, this day would include the annual visit from LA Opera’s Holiday Music Tour.

LA Opera artists sing at City of Hope Medical Center for the Hope for the Holidays concert

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