Sunday, November 14, 2010

Giving Kids a Voice Through New Opera Creation

Every summer, Tapestry New Opera's INside Opera program runs an opera creation program for at-risk kids in the Cabbagetown neighborhood of Toronto. This is no basic opera in the schools program - a composer and librettist on the creative team help the kids create, produce, and perform their own opera. The students themselves are able to take ownership of both the process and final product, with a bit of assistance from the composer/librettist team.

The following documentary was created by Juan Baquero at the 2009 INside Opera workshop, featuring the kids of City Hope in St. Jamestown. Joining Tapestry's Education and Outreach Director Amber Ebert are librettist Dave Deveau and composer Glenn James. The total running time of the documentary is around 30 minutes, but if you're interested in how a contemporary opera outreach program can create an unforgettable experience for at-risk kids, you won't be disappointed.

If you think that this program is important both for the kids of Toronto and the future of opera in Canada, here's a unique opportunity to help: Visit Tapestry's page on the Pepsi Refresh Project and vote twice a day so that the company can win $25,000 to go towards the program.


  1. This program is not only important for the kids , things like this are crucial for kids development. That's how kids can learn to express themselves. All kinds of arts help kids use their whole brain ;-) You don't know who they going to grow up to be. Keep Kids of the streets at all cost !!

  2. Thanks Tomasz! One can only hope that these types of programs get the kind of funding that helps them make an impact on these kids.

  3. It s always a pleasure to see such initiatives with program like this that make a difference in children's lives. As much as I am concerned, classical music is important (for everyone)! I believe that kids need to have a lot of different "stimulus" to be able to decide what they like based on their own character !! And this is what I try to do with my children! during our lockdown here in Greece, i watched several different performances from greek national opera that hosted several online streaming with many options, like opera, ballet performances, dance performances for children, operetta and my kids enjoyed it as much as i did!