The TFCO: a young people's opera blitzNews
Continuing Toronto’s trend of innovative and exciting ways to experience opera is the inaugural Toronto Festival of Children’s Opera, running May 29 to June 12. Opera written for and by young audiences is an expanding part of the art form in the 21st-century, and some of Canada’s biggest players are partnering up to celebrate children’s opera: the Canadian Opera Company, Tapestry Opera, VIVA! Youth Singers of Toronto, the Canadian Music Centre, Opera.ca, and yours truly, Schmopera. The Festival is being led by Canadian Children’s Opera Company’s Dean Burry (Artistic Director) and Ken Hall (Managing Director).
The Festival’s packed schedule includes Youth Night at the Opera to catch Tapestry’s upcoming Rocking Horse Winner, performances of the COC After School Opera program’s Adventures of the Magic Tree Fort, and of Dean Burry’s The Sword in the Schoolyard and The Hobbit. On top of that, there are free events like Composers (of the) Roundtable with Canadian composer James Rolfe, and the day-long Symposium on Children’s Opera, hosted by the COC.
“For me, the most exciting thing about the Toronto Festival of Children’s Opera is that it shines a bright light on both the incredible work that is being done in Toronto and the incredible people who are doing it,” says Burry. “A lot of people think that works for children aren’t as valid or important as ‘adult’ opera. This couldn’t be further from the truth, and great children’s opera really has something to offer everyone.”
Here at Schmopera, we’re looking forward to highlighting the Festival’s events with unique interviews and on-site feedback; we’ll keep you in the loop, and let our readers know how these opera-savvy young people are immersing themselves in the learning and doing of our favourite art form.
Burry sums it all up well: “The Toronto Festival of Children’s Opera is a celebration of creativity and inspiration for the child in all of us.”