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)

But how many interactions is that? 10,000, 50,000?

It’s more. Approximately 138,293 reaches.

Yes, you read that right.

Nearly 140,000 opera reaches in the community this past season. How did we reach so many people? Here are a few of their stories!

OPERA FOR ALL – 27,601 reaches

We have many programs designed to let people experience opera for little to no cost, including our free community recitals. A little boy named Angelo came to a recital with his mother and was completely starstruck by tenor Ashley Faatoalia. Angelo met Ashley after the performance and later told his mother, “I want to BE Ashley when I grow up!” Angelo loved opera so much that his mom took him to our Saturday Mornings at the Opera program.

Inspire Charter High School at The Hubble Cantata at The Griffith Observatory (Photo: Nikki Nicklia)

Inspire Charter High School at The Hubble Cantata at The Griffith Observatory (Photo: Nikki Nicklia)


LA Opera’s Classroom Integration efforts include In-School Opera residencies, touring productions and special student matinees in Stern Grand Hall which over 3,000 students attend! Teacher Nikki Nickila brought her middle and high school students to performance of The Hubble Cantata through Opera Prep. They continue to sing pieces of The Hubble Cantata whenever together — someone inevitably starts singing the phrase ‘Let me hold you newborn’ and the others join in with other parts that stuck out to them.

GET ON STAGE – 12,772 reaches

What better way to learn about opera than to get up and sing! The Zarzuela Project, Opera Camp and the Community Opera offer people of all ages and experience levels the opportunity to perform opera onstage. Zarzuela Project member Karen Moreno called her experience at the annual El Pueblo concert “incredibly fun,” adding: “The project is an amazing opportunity for the community to learn about Zarzuela and opera … a truly life changing experience.”

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

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

LIFELONG LEARNING – 55,026 reaches

There’s always more to learn. Fans of all ages and backgrounds can expand their knowledge through our lifelong learning programs. From pre-performance talks to over 40,000 opera-goers to the intimate experience of a Master Class.

“I love curling up with the podcasts on,” said opera fan Martin Foley. “It’s like sharing a cup of coffee with a brilliant, passionate opera scholar.”

These are just a few of the ways we bring opera to our community. Want to learn more? Click here for more information.

Be sure to stay up-to-date with LA Opera Blog for more “By The Numbers” posts!

LA Opera is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization dedicated to the greater good.
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