r/opera's jackpot post

r/opera's jackpot post

Jenna Simeonov

There is a dude out there on the Internet who has gotten the opera bug. Great news, we all say! Good choice, sir. Even better, the budding operaphile is reaching out via r/opera, asking how to get a proper introduction to opera. His post is titled, “Help a noob expand his opera horizons”, and he asks,

“The only operatic piece I really know is Nessun Dorma as performed by Pavarotti. But that last note give me chills! Is other opera like that or have I discovered the pinnacle already? Suggest some pieces for me to explore that will thrill me!”

It’s one of the top posts in r/opera, probably because it’s just the kind of question that opera-lovers want to answer; it means they get to comment with their own personal summary of opera’s history, their recommended “next steps” from the Opera Noob’s original discovery of “Nessun Dorma”, and how to get the most out of his live opera experiences to come. (Go, be opera nerds and add your two cents!) The Noob got some decent advice, about maybe catching a performance of Turandot to see if he’s into opera for the long haul, not just the high notes. A few commenters told him to go see Mozart right away, because his operas are funny. A mini-discussion broke out about surtitles; one commenter didn’t know surtitles existed until this week, and agreed that they were a great idea. There are small disagreements over whether or not Wagner is a good choice, and someone links to this version of the Ring Cycle that lasts less than 3 minutes (It’s still confusing). There was lots of mention of Carmen, of Madama Butterfly, and plenty of “Nessun Dorma”-type tenor arias. And there was this person, who spent a lot of time describing her links:

So, if you were advising an eager opera noob of your own, where would you send them? From “vincerĂ²” to “piangerĂ²”? From Pavarotti to Placido? You have an operatic blank slate of a person in front of you: what now?


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