Articles on Opera

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Opera is treated differently to other artforms in Australia. AAP Image/Tracey NearmyAAP Image/Tracey Nearmy

Does opera deserve its privileged status within arts funding?

It is a strange reality but opera as an artform is always given special and arguably preferential treatment by governments and other influential forces in Western society. This happens, it seems, regardless…
Saul at the Adelaide Festival: the early scenes feel like hallucinatory dreamscapes unanchored in space. Tony Lewis

Barrie Kosky’s Saul: a masterpiece of operatic staging

With its themes of family dysfunction, love, death, madness and the supernatural, this Old Testament story is ready-made for opera.
A mosaic of King Roger II: we should celebrate his 12th-century example of inter-cultural collaboration. Matthias Süßen/Wikimedia commons

What can the medieval King Roger teach us about tolerance?

A new production of the opera King Roger will open this week. At a time when Europe was charged with fear of the 'Muslim threat', this 12th century king collaborated with an Islamic scholar on an extraordinary project.
Circus and opera crash together in Cirque de la Symphonie. Daniel Aulsebrook

Sequins and symphonies: how opera ran away with the circus

Barriers between artforms are tumbling down in three recent productions that mix circus and opera. The shows range from sombre to silly, but all hit magnificent high notes.
Attempts to explain opera’s affective power have a long history. Photo: Keith Saunders. (L-R) Voyage to the Moon's Phoebe Briggs, Jeremy Kleeman, Emma Matthews, Sally-Anne Russell.

Voyage to the moon, opera and the voyage of human emotion

It seems obvious to say that opera "moves" people. But the question of "how" it moves people is far less straightforward. Cue a new research project pegged to Voyage to the Moon.
The voices that can be used in a show like this are not those one would hear in Madama Butterfly. Patrick (Peter Cousens), Ellen (Melissa Madden Grey), The Divorce. ABC TV.

It’s TV! It’s opera! What to make of ABC’s The Divorce

The kinds of voices that can be used in a show like ABC's The Divorce are certainly not typical of those one would hear in Madama Butterfly. But – and let's be honest for a second – does it matter?
Kurt Weill and Bertolt Brecht’s last collaboration The Seven Deadly Sins, first performed in 1933, in circumstances not dissimilar than those we face today. Pictured: Meow Meow. Victorian Opera

How now Meow Meow? The Seven Deadly Sins is a Weimar Opera with 21st-century resonance

Victorian Opera this week stages The Seven Deadly Sins, the final collaboration between Kurt Weill and Bertolt Brecht. First staged in 1933, it is a masterpiece by two of the most revolutionary artists of Weimar Germany.
Rabbits transgresses the increasingly porous boundary traditional opera and contemporary musical theatre to great effect. Jon Green

A genre-hopping triumph: The Rabbits

The Rabbits has adapted Shaun Tan's evocative paintings and John Marsden's spare storytelling into a rich and compelling "opera".

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