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Unexpected Arias

If the standard selection of overpriced jukeboxes, off-key cover bands, and Jimmy Buffett wannabes at your local bar is getting a little old, there’s a new game in town — the opera. Once the domain solely of the rich (and Pretty Woman-era Richard Gere), the opera has gotten a modern-day makeover, and it’s heading to midtown’s bar scene. This month at the Stage, Florida Grand Opera (FGO) has launched an “Unexpected Operas in Unexpected Places” series, featuring a tango double bill. Bargoers will hear Robert Xavier Rodriguez’s Tango and Ástor Piazzolla’s María de Buenos Aires, all while sipping on bottled brewskis and vodka tonics. Yeah, this ain’t your grandma’s opera. In recent years, FGO has been gung ho about introducing opera to a new generation. Last year, it launched mini-arias at a gallery during Wynwood’s Second Saturday Art Walk and hosted a series of pop-up performances in places such as IKEA. “One of the main goals is to attract different audiences, new audiences, probably younger sometimes,” FGO’s music director, Ramon Tebar, said. The new “Unexpected Places” endeavor will span three seasons and was made possible with funding from a Knight Foundation grant. The Stage and the tango are the first season’s chosen combo. Participating players will be members of FGO’s Young Artist Studio.
March 20-24, 2013


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