by Mike Telin
With the weather forecast to be 85 and sunny with no rain in sight, why not take a picnic to your backyard or front porch and enjoy a family-friendly evening of music courtesy of Cleveland Opera Theater?
Beginning on Saturday, June 20 at 7:00 pm, the company will take its popular Opera For All free summer concerts online. (And if you’re looking for a culinary theme to accompany your listening pleasure, Saturday just happens to be National Ice Cream Social Day.)
“Our hope is that families will be listening together,” Megan Thompson, Cleveland Opera Theater director of education and outreach, said by telephone. “We won’t be announcing the programs until the night of each concert, but it will be a nice mix of familiar pieces, lesser-known works, and we almost always sprinkle in some fun musical theater pieces as well — especially from the Golden Age.”
Performances will continue on July 25 at 7:00 pm (National Hot Fudge Sundae Day and Wine and Cheese Day) and on August 30 at 7:00 pm (National Toasted Marshmallow Day — s’mores perhaps?).
If all of this sparks the opera bug, why not dig into the Explorer Series? Currently available, Episode 1 features the company’s 2017 production of Mozart’s The Marriage of Figaro. Thompson noted that in addition to the performance, each episode is accompanied by age-specific interactive booklets and a downloadable digital program.
“We have five different age packets for Marriage of Figaro — Pre-K is very different from the ones for people who are in high school or college. We’ve also tried to think through the different ways that people could engage with the content. We’ve designed the packets so that if a parent had multiple children, they could still engage with each one in an appropriate way and find a way to enjoy the opera together. If I’m a parent, how am I going to explain this opera to my three-year-old and my seven-year-old who are both watching it with me?”
Cleveland Opera Theater also offers three free midday offerings accessible on the company’s Facebook page. “Opera-101” meets on Monday, Tuesday, and Thursday at 12:15 pm. (Click here to submit questions in advance.)
“Page to Stage” meets on Wednesdays at 12:15 pm. Attendees will get behind-the-scenes access to learn about the creative process behind a mainstage production.
And join conductor Domenico Boyagian on Fridays at 12:15 pm for the “Maestro’s Corner.” The segment features interviews with conductors, singers, and other opera professionals from around the world.
Published on ClevelandClassical.com June 16, 2020.
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