by Mike Telin
At a time when everyone is practicing social distancing, and shelter in place is for the time being a reality, many artists and arts organizations are responding by moving to streaming formats. Beginning on Monday, March 30, Cleveland Opera Theater will launch Opera for All Online, social-distance-safe programs to experience, explore, and engage in opera. The events are free.
“Throughout the company’s history we’ve always done what was necessary to remain viable and relevant in the community,” Scott Skiba, Cleveland Opera Theater’s executive artistic director, said during a recent telephone conversation. “We’ve often thought about getting into the streaming environment, and now is the opportunity to try some new things without changing the organization’s mission.”
Skiba noted that two Opera for All Online programs were already part of the company’s offerings. That includes Opera-101, which will now meet Monday through Friday at 12:15 pm on the company’s Facebook page. The staff welcomes questions for future sessions (email them here). “People can ask anything they want to know about opera, like can you really break a glass by singing high? Or what do the conductor and the director do?” Skiba said. “Megan Thompson, our director of education and outreach, will moderate and give lectures about upcoming Metropolitan Opera broadcasts.”