Dunya News: As lockdown lifts, Barcelona plants enjoy a day at the opera. “The lights dim, the curtain rises and the music begins — all signs normal life has returned to Barcelona’s Liceu opera house, were the seats not filled with some 2,300 plants. After months of silence, the emblematic opera house located in central Barcelona decided to throw open its doors with a unique performance — a metaphor for the months of lockdown when nature took back space from people.”
Travel+Leisure: The Metropolitan Opera Is Offering a Ridiculously Cool Virtual Summer Camp — and It’s Free (Video). “On June 15, the Metropolitan Opera will launch its Met Opera Global Summer Camp, an educational initiative to ‘engage and support students worldwide.’ According to a statement provided by the Metropolitan Opera, the eight-week online summer camp will run from June 15 to August 7 and will include a featured opera each week from the Met’s own digital library of performances. And best of all, it will be completely free for children and teens to attend.”
Hindustan Times: Milan’s La Scala opera house ‘re-opens’ via Google virtual tour during coronavirus lockdown. “Milan’s famed La Scala opera house on Thursday unveiled a virtual journey through its ornate premises and rich archives via Google Arts & Culture, with serendipitous timing as theaters throughout Italy and the western world remain closed due to the coronavirus.”
Apartment Therapy: You Can Now Stream Classical Opera and Ballet Performances For Free. “The classical arts bring history and culture into lives around the globe. But you don’t have to wait for the theater doors to reopen in order to reap the benefits: Stingray Classica is offering one month of on-demand and live performances that can be streamed for free (no dress code required!). The Canada-based TV channel has opened up their digital library for everyone to enjoy for a month free of charge. Stingray Classica features orchestral performances, operas, ballets, and music documentaries from all over the globe, ranging in genres for every type of performing arts lover. ”
Broadway World: Metropolitan Opera Launches Weekly Free Student Streams. “On April 6, the Metropolitan Opera will launch Free Student Streams, a new program of free opera streams for students and teachers worldwide during the health crisis. Drawing from the Met’s extensive online library of operas and curricular materials designed to align with the Common Core Standards, and incorporating new live virtual conversations with Met artists and educators from the company’s national education program, the initiative has been designed as an ongoing cross-curricular offering at a time when schools are closed and online classwork has increased dramatically.”
ClassicFM: Royal Opera House is streaming free ballet and opera online during coronavirus outbreak. “The Royal Opera House has announced that it will be launching a programme of online shows and masterclasses, following the coronavirus outbreak. The news comes as London’s famous opera house is just one of the music institutions to be affected by COVID-19, with many of its upcoming productions now forced to be cancelled or postponed.”
Playbill: Metropolitan Opera, After Shutting Its Doors, Will Offer Free Streams From Live in HD Catalog. “Beginning March 16, the Met will stream a title from its Live in HD series each night through the duration of the closure. The performances, originally captured as live broadcasts in movie theatres worldwide, will begin at 7:30 PM from the company’s homepage. (The featured performances—and several others—are available via the Met Opera on Demand subscription service, though the videos in the nightly series will be made available for free for 20 hours following the initial stream).”
New-to-me, from Open Culture: The Opera Database: Find Scores, Libretti & Synopses for Thousands of Operas Free Online. “If you don’t live in a major city or can’t get to the opera often, you can watch full-length performances online at projects like The Opera Platform, which not only includes filmed popular operas like Verdi’s La Traviata, but also, as Colin Marshall noted in an earlier Open Culture post, ‘provides a host of supplementary materials, including documentary and historical materials that put the month’s featured opera in context.’ If you’re ready to dig deeper, however, or are already a scholar of the form, or if you, yourself, happen to be an opera singer, then you will absolutely want to visit the Opera Database.”
The Stage: Danish start-up to launch ‘LinkedIn for opera artists’. “A Danish start-up hoping to overhaul the talent-booking process for opera has launched a platform that aims to foster closer relationships between artists and organisations. Founded by Danish opera singer Sune Hjerrild, Truelinked will launch in the UK later this year as an online platform for artists to connect directly with organisations, described as a professional self-management system.”
Bdaily News: Opera house database acquired in six-figure deal with Truelinked. “Operabase, an online database of opera performers, houses and companies, has recently been taken over by Truelinked. Founded in 1996 as a means of collating and sharing information on opera performances worldwide, Operabase’s catalogue is available in 27 languages and, at its peak, was collecting 25,000 new performances year-on-year.”
Open Culture: Hear Singers from the Metropolitan Opera Record Their Voices on Traditional Wax Cylinders. “Vinyl is back in a big way. Music lovers who booted their record collections during the compact disc’s approximately 15 year reign are scrambling to replace their old favorites, even in the age of streaming. They can’t get enough of that warm analog sound. Can a wax cylinder revival be far behind?”
The Wagnerian: Bayreuth To Digitize Richard Wagner Archive And Make Available To All. “…thanks to a program of digitizing the entire archive, including letters between Wagner and Cosima, his notebooks, clean copies of his scores, and photos, this should soon become an easier process. The entire archive will be placed online and made available to anyone that wishes to search it.” Please note I could not find anything on the Wagner Museum site. I poked around and couldn’t find any more information about any Wagner initiative at this writing. I’ll keep an eye out.
Classic FM: We’ve put these opera arias through Google Translate and the result is bonkers. “Translating operas is a notoriously tricky business – so we wanted to see if a computer could make sense of two arias by Verdi and Puccini. The result was… interesting.” Very funny.
MakeUseOf: I Switched From Chrome to Opera and I’m Never Going Back. “I personally have every major browser installed on my system — the needs of my job require it. But if I wasn’t burdened by that, I can confidently say that I’d be an Opera man. Despite using Chrome for the past eight months, I recently switched back to Opera, and here are my reasons why.”
Ars Technica: Vivaldi is building “Opera as it should’ve been”. “Working in tight niches occupied by the behemoths of the Internet world is hard; doing it as a startup without external funding is even harder. The 35-strong team of Vivaldi, the spiritual successor to Opera, is doing exactly that: two years after the first public beta and eight months after the release of version 1.0, the Web browser has about 1 million users—but it still isn’t turning a profit.”