When the pandemic brought down the curtains on live shows around the world, the Dallas Opera (TDO) responded by launching thedallasopera.TV, a streaming platform for its global audience. Since April last year, opera-goers who failed to settle into their seats at the famed Winspear Opera House have been able to enjoy TDO archive performances and new small-scale opera content from home. . Now that live productions are back on stage, TDO is making access even easier for everyone by bringing its content online without a paid subscription.
“Dallas Opera is pleased to expand access to thedallasopera.TV removing the paywall for our audiences,” says Ian Derrer, Managing Director and CEO of TDO Kern Wildenthal. “During the pandemic shutdown, we’ve learned a lot about creating content for this digital stage, understanding demand, and generating interest through social media. We’ve also learned that free access creates a better user experience and offering a variety of access points is an important part of growing new audiences.
Viewers simply have to Register on the site to start browsing through five main categories: Mainstage, TDO Network, OperaKids, Backstage Pass and Originals. The breadth of content has something for everyone, from first-time explorers to young audiences to opera superfans.
Mainstage features high-quality Full HD productions and concerts from the Dallas Opera stage at the Bill and Margot Winspear Opera. This spring and summer, three of the company’s Spring 2022 productions will premiere, including “Madame Butterfly,” starring Latonia Moore as Cio-Cio-San; “Flight” by Jonathan Dove, conducted by musical director Emmanuel Villaume; and “The Pearl Fishers,” led by Principal Guest Conductor Nicole Payment and featuring Joyce El-Khoury, René Barbera and Alfredo Daza. Archived performances from previous seasons will also be available, including “Tosca.”
TDO Network contains hugely popular digital mini-series, which take viewers beyond the usual live opera experience, connecting audiences with the diverse international opera community. Ongoing shows created by and featuring the international opera community include “Taking the Stage with Kristian and Quo”, a gripping conversation that offers opportunities to dig deep and explore collective solutions through meaningful dialogue on inclusion, arts, education, equity, diversity, opera and more; “The News with Operawire,” hosted by David and Francisco Salazar, who bring strong journalism credentials to this weekly roundup of stories exploring the latest industry trends and exploring the influential artists and makers who are reshaping the opera in the 21st century; and “What Happened Was… with Zachary James,” which discusses watershed moments with some of the most well-known and beloved artists from Broadway, dance, opera, film and television. With a wealth of insider knowledge and stories from a decades-long career that spans both stage and screen, James’ show is insightful and delightfully humorous.
The archival content of the TDO network can also be viewed at thedallasopera.TV, including Angel Blue’s The Journey; Nick @ 9, an online variety show with singer and podcaster Nick Brownlee; #AskMaestro with TDO music director Emmanuel Villaume; Opera Box Score, a comedy riff on sports broadcasts that focuses on opera performances and staff; and much more.
OperaKids offers engaging programming for younger opera fans and theater-loving kids, like Kids Opera Boot Camp, an interactive series about creating opera and learning about music; MaestraMagic!, an edutainment show featuring conductor Maestra Elizabeth Askren, her daughter Lily and a handful of guests, including animals; and kid-friendly productions including “Jack and the Beanstalk,” “Doctor Miracle,” and “The Elixir of Love.”
Backstage Pass features exclusive content that takes viewers behind the scenes and features artist Q&As, behind-the-scenes footage, and bonus content from artists, staff, musicians, and creative teams. Backstage Pass also offers TDO ConnectionsTM, a program designed to explore operatic themes and facilitate collective learning about the impact stories told on stage have on the community. In the past season, TDO Connections™ explored opera representation in “Madame Butterfly” and “The Pearl Fishers” in partnership with the Asian Opera Alliance, who worked behind the scenes with directors to achieve a fair and more appropriate view of the two pieces. .
One-off collaborations and made-for-digital film projects will continue to fall under the Originals category and will be free or individually priced at low pay-per-view rates. Current offerings include the three-episode digital opera “Vanished,” starring John Holiday and Russell Thomas; Calleja—take me home; and Calleja—Sacred Music of Saint Johns and Beyond.
There’s so much more to opera than a stage performance, and TDO invites new and loyal fans to take a closer look thedallasopera.TV. Whether you want to sit back and watch world-class opera from the comfort of your couch, laugh during an artist’s series of parodies, or learn more about your favorite singer, you can explore opera and its creators from all horizons. corner for free.