How does one learn to enjoy the opera as an alternative form of music?

By Brown Articles Published 07/2/2009 | Arts and Culture

For those amongst you who have never thought of going to the opera, maybe the time has come to turn over a new leaf. It is true that, at first it can be difficult to acquire a taste for opera music for those who have never been used to any sort of classical music to start with. But after experiencing singers such as Pavarotti or Callas, most people fall head over heels for the opera.

It is however important to be prepared for your first opera experience, choose a light opera to start off with, or one that offers spectacular stage effects or dramatic themes, such as Madame Butterfly by Puccini. Before you actually go to the opera get acquainted with the plot, or read a good synopsis in order to be able to follow the whole opera through and fully appreciate its significance and nuances. This preparation will help immensely and will allow you to capture all the emotion and drama throughout the opera.

Remember that it may be difficult to follow an opera the first time, for you will have to get used to the rhythm and type of singing, so make sure you assist when you are feeling fit to concentrate throughout the singing. If you go when you are likely to doze off, due to a tiring week at the office, then the opera will surely be a let down, it really needs a lot of concentration, especially for first timers.

You may also get acquainted with the opera by taking out a CD of the opera from the library, this will help you familiarize with the music and appreciate the nuances during the actual performance. Opera glasses are also essential, you may rent these and fully enjoy the stage setting most operas flourish in.

Pavarotti was probably one of the best opera singers for attracting those who were not opera fans. He had a modern approach to this art and often dared to mix opera with pop music, thus drawing many new fans towards opera music. It might therefore be a good idea to start exploring opera through this world famous artist, who was able to render opera more accessible to all.

Some well-known films such as Batman Begins and Star Trek used dramatic opera music to enhance the effects of the screen, thus rendering them more powerful and created a capturing atmosphere. When opera is used in pop culture it attracts a large number of viewers, who, through these circumstances may start to appreciate, this more dramatic and arousing form of art.

You may also try more melodious forms or opera, which you may find more accessible and easier to appreciate, such as The Marriage of Figaro, which is fun and lighthearted. However, there are many operas, which are not difficult to follow, and if you prepare before hand you will be surprised at the effect this form of art will have on you!