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Operas That Changed The World

  • Gleacher Center N Cityfront Plaza Dr Chicago, IL, 60611 United States (map)

This daylong seminar will consider crucial operatic masterpieces that transformed western music. Compositions by Mozart, Puccini, Rossini, Verdi, Wagner, and Bizet are explored, together with cultural context and influence as time permits. Works are presented via piano, CD, and DVD. For a complete list of arias to be discussed, please see syllabus on the Graham School website.


Register online. 

Audio Intro

John Gibbons talks about the 8 operas that changed the world and why they made the cut. Note: This audio segment was recorded for the 8-week-version of this course. But many of the same works will be discussed in this 1-day event.

Why Opera?

“Opera is all around us — hundreds of hours’ worth on YouTube alone — and there is no excuse not to take part in it. It still requires some commitment to knowledge and it rarely has a beat, but there’s just so much of Lady Gaga a human being can enjoy/tolerate without needing to be touched in a slightly deeper place.” – Robert Levine in Weep, Shudder, Die: A Guide to Loving Opera

Recommended Books & Music

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Buy Opera CDs & Videos at ArkivMusic

Opera For DummieBy David Pogue, Scott Speck

Opera 101: A Complete Guide to Learning and Loving Opera

By Fred Plotkin

Weep, Shudder, Die: A Guide to Loving Opera

By Robert Levine

The NPR Curious Listener's Guide to Classical Music

By Tim Smith

A History of Opera

By Carolyn Abbate, Roger Parker

Earlier Event: January 15
Nationalist Traditions in Music
Later Event: March 31
Schubert and Mahler