Show artwork for Wild

Opera on the Move

Posted on: July 13, 2020

Opera is a global art form. At LA Opera, you aren’t just hearing music from around the world, in languages from Italian to Sanskrit—you’re also seeing productions initially conceived by opera companies from all corners of the globe. But we don't just bring world-class designers, directors, and musicians to Los Angeles—we also send our own productions around the world. From San Diego to Santiago, there’s a global audience for the power of LA Opera’s craftsmanship and artistic vision.

Now, join us on a trip around the world (from the comfort of your living room). Here are just a few of LA Opera’s one hundred-plus jet-setting productions. 

Il Trovatore (1998) 

Trovatore Ken Howard 1998 001pr

Our 1998 production of "Il Trovatore" (Photo: Ken Howard).

When this production debuted in 1998, it was lauded as timeless and fiery. It’s been seen by audiences abroad in Genoa, Italy, and Gothenburg, Sweden, as well as closer to home in San Diego, Houston, and Chicago. It was still on the road in 2013, fifteen years after its debut. With such a sumptuous, sophisticated production of one of the world’s most recognizable operas, it only stands to reason. 

Ahknaten (2016) 


Our 2016 production of "Akhnaten" (Photo: Cory Weaver).

This Philip Glass masterpiece, the second in his Portrait trilogy (alongside Einstein on the Beach and Satyagraha), was given breathtaking life by director Phelim McDermott. Co-produced with the English National Opera, this production has now been seen by thousands of opera fans, not just at the Metropolitan Opera, where it was performed this season, but around the world, thanks to the Met’s Live in HD broadcast of it to movie theaters. 

I Due Foscari (2013)


Our 2013 production of "I Due Foscari" (Photo: Cory Weaver).

Rental isn’t the only way LA Opera productions travel around the world. Often, we’ll team up with other opera houses to craft a production, letting us pool our resources and bring more grand opera to more places. Of all our co-productions, Il Due Foscari stands out for the number of collaborators—the Palau de les Arts in Valencia, Spain, the Theater an der Wien in Vienna, Austria, and the Royal Opera House in London, England. That’s two continents, three languages, and four very different opera houses, all working together to craft a huge, intricate (and perfect) operatic performance. It takes a lot of coordination and communication to make these things happen—but it’s worth it for the final product. 

The Magic Flute (1993 and 2013) 

Flute home

Our 2013 production of "The Magic Flute" (Photo: Cory Weaver).

It’s possible that no work has brought the joy of opera to more people than Mozart’s The Magic Flute. And LA Opera has played a unique role in bringing this delightful masterpiece to the world. Our Peter Hall-directed Magic Flute is an LA Opera production that traveled to Dallas, Seattle, and San Francisco—and, in 2006, all the way to Auckland, New Zealand. And since 2013, we’ve been the North American licensee for Barrie Kosky’s stunning, projection-based Magic Flute, which originated at the Komische Oper in Berlin. This production is the perfect combination of (relatively) easy to transport and easy to love, and it shows—it’s been seen in over sixty cities worldwide. 

No one’s traveling these days (not even shipping containers of opera sets and costumes), but the joy of operas gone by can still be accessed. From recordings to videos to cherished opera memories, our beloved art form is far from gone. And you help make sure LA Opera is back on stage (and on the road) as soon as possible. How? By giving to the LA Opera Relief Fund. That’s how you can directly support the artists, artisans, and craftspeople who created these beloved productions (and many, many more).

Donate Now