By Tom Lady
Welcome to the eighth, and most inspiring and uplifting, installment of BRAVO Live!
Are you ready to go to Camp?
Yes, this episode takes you inside Opera Camp, LA Opera's two-week intensive summer camp at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion for children ages nine to 17.
More than a viewer, you are an audience member watching the Camp and its student-performers learn and grow under the steady, nurturing guidance and tutelage of the staff of LA Opera Connects, LA Opera’s community engagement and education department, which produces Opera Camp. Better yet, while we watch them interact with the students, the coaches and staff also speak directly to viewer, via talking-head interview and voiceover, about what Opera Camp is, what it means and why it is important, both to LA Opera’s mission as well as to the growth, development and social justice awareness of the students themselves.
More than just another education program from LAO Connects, Opera Camp is somewhat of a passion project for the Opera League. For it is none other than the Opera League that provides the critical funding for the Camp, including funding the scholarships of all the student-performers.
This funding comes courtesy of the Peter Hemmings Gala Award Dinner, the League’s annual flagship fundraising event wherein we recognize an individual or organization who, over time, has made significant contributions to the development of opera in Los Angeles County.
Opera Camp is much more than your garden variety summer camp, much more than your average theater class. Students not only learn singing, dancing, dramatic performance and staging. They also immerse themselves in the social justice theme of the opera in which they will perform at the culmination of the rigorous two weeks. This includes field trips to sites and interacting with guest speakers connected to the event dramatized in the opera. By fortnight’s end, these kids will have learned and grown as culturally- and socially-attuned performers.
So kick back and spend a few inspiring minutes with the talented and passionate Opera Campers.
About BRAVO Live!
BRAVO Live! is a series the Opera League launched in March 2021. Inspired by the League's flagship print publication, BRAVO (check out recent issues here and here), BRAVO Live!'s charter is to adapt BRAVO's interview format for the virtual space to spotlight today's brightest stars of the musical firmament, both in front of and behind the curtain.
By the way, if you missed previous episodes of BRAVO Live!, check them out on the Opera League's YouTube channel.
Without further ado, please enjoy episode eight of BRAVO Live! We hope you are entertained and enlightened.