Burning questions for first time opera goers!

If you have never been to an opera before, it can be easy to feel that it won’t be ‘for you’.  Here at Mid Wales Opera we are passionate about bringing opera to more people across the country.  We have compiled some top frequently asked questions, but if you have any more then please feel free to ask!  

What do you wear to an opera?

The answer is simple; anything you’d like to wear! Opera is not about dressing up, although you can if you want, it is about the music, the people, the performance and the experience – whether that means you wear jeans or a tiara, or even jeans and a tiara, it doesn’t matter to us or anyone else.

Does it matter I don't speak another language?

We have chosen to perform our operas in English. While we appreciate operas sung in the language they were written in, there are some truly delightful interpretations out there and we think it’s important to connect with our audiences on every level, through staging, movement, music and the words sung.

How long is an opera?

It depends; we want to bring opera to more people so you’ll never find it drags. Our SmallStages tour in the autumn includes an hour of opera and a taster of the spring tour, a treat that will last, in total, around two hours. Our Spring production will be a little longer, generally over two hours, but there is a comfort/ice cream break in the middle – and sometimes, as in the case of Eugene Onegin, two intervals in which to catch your breath.

Will I understand what is going on?

Yes, maybe not everything all of the time, but most of the time you will. We will provide you with a synopsis of the story in our programmes so you can get an idea of the story before the show begins, but the performance on stage is designed to share the story with you. Most operas are around the themes of love, tragedy, passion, adventure or magic and you will be quickly swept up in the storyline. As we sing in English too the words will be clear.

Does opera always end in tragedy?

Oh no, opera is a form of entertainment so it’s not all doom and gloom – although there are some tragic storylines and many plots would be lost without them (even in modern day films) there are a lot of themes in opera including love, passion, coming of age, deceit, power, myth and legends.

Why should I go to see an opera?

Because it is so often overlooked and seen as something that is not for everyone. We want to blast through that barrier and bring opera to everyone. Opera is about the experience, not just about the story – a night out that includes music, theatre, lighting, talented cast and players. There is also a great community within opera. Just like any form of entertainment it may not be for you, or a particular style of opera may not be ‘your thing’, but we think it’s worth a go – even if it’s just one off the bucket list!

Why do people love opera?

For the same reasons that people love any art form, the deeper you go the more treasures it holds. Opera is a complex and beautiful coming together of different professions – from skilled musicians and professional singers through to adept lighting technicians, staging designers and many more. It all culminates on one night, a glittering live production that is designed to stir the emotions and get you thinking.

Opera contains some of the most majestic, evocative and powerful melodies in music and the storylines are spellbinding, often surviving hundreds of years being interpreted by different directors. Even if you have seen a particular opera many times, each version plays differently on stage.

Find Out What's On

Come and experience opera with us