Monday, April 16, 2012

Retiring and Rewiring at the Opera

New York is a magical place. Yesterday afternoon we experienced some of that magic at a Metropolitan Opera Guild event.This event was sponsored by the Adult Learning and Community Engagement team headed up by Director, Dottie Allen. We got to watch recent retiree and opera legend, Frederica Von Stade conduct a master class. Did we say retiree? Yes, she officially retired, but continues to use her voice in a variety of ways...still singing, teaching, being an ambassador for the world of Opera. There can be no better person representing the art. Flicka, as she likes to be called, is kind, supportive, enthusiastic, and a sparkplug that ignites audiences. She is rewiring her talent and interest by expanding her opera and musical horizons. The students she helped were amazing. So much talent and so much commitment.

We're new to opera. Jeri started with Opera Boot Camp and Rick will be taking the course in the fall. We are learning a new vocabulary, history, meeting new people, and finding joy that we never could have imagined in an art form we didn't know much about. We really are rewiring our tastes and expanding our horizons. It is giving us so much driver fulfillment...continuous learning, making new connections with others, feeling energized, developing new friendships. It is amazing how many people we've met who are retiring and rewiring to the world of opera.

Opera sounds expensive. And it could be if all you did was buy the best seats at the Metropolitan Opera House at Lincoln Center. But how about trying opera out by going to a high definition live performance at a movie theater, opting for a high balcony seat and bringing binoculars, buying or downloading a CD, or going to an opera related lecture. You can make it expensive or customize it to fit your budget. The Metropolitan Opera Guild is there to help you get started on the journey. Take the first step. You will be glad you did.