A NIGHT AT THE OPERA IS AN EXCEPTIONAL EVENING OF ENTERTAINMENT!
Opera blends the artistry of theatre, dance and musical elegance, forging a dramatic and unforgettable theatrical experience. The combination of a full orchestra, chorus, soloists and occasionally dancers offers so much more than any of these elements could achieve on their own.
Everyone can follow along.
All mainstage operas at the National Arts Centre are accompanied by Surtitles. Follow the story through these simultaneous translations projected above the stage in both English and French.
What should I wear to the opera?
Although many people believe that you must dress up for an opera, there's really no "dress code" for opera. Often, patrons who attend Opening Night, the first night of the performance, will come wearing black tie, however others will come more casual. Some dress up for a special night out, and some dress down for comfort. Essentially we suggest that you wear what you're comfortable with and most importantly that you enjoy the show.
How long does the opera last?
The length of the opera will vary per opera, but many are between 2-3 hours in length including the intermissions. There are typically two intermissions for most three-act operas, and a single intermission for two-act operas.
What happens if I'm late?
We ask you to please be on time. However we know that sometimes, being late just can't be avoided. When you arrive after the curtain has gone up, the ushers at the NAC will ask you to wait until a suitable interlude in the opera allows for you to enter with the least amount of distraction. (often this will be after the overture, but sometimes not until intermission).
When should I clap?
One of the most exciting aspects of attending a live performance is the interactive relationship between the audience and the performers. When the audience is at its best, the performers will put on the best show possible. Feel free to show your appreciation by clapping at the end of big arias, at the end of a scene and, of course, at the final curtain call. If you really enjoyed a singer's performance, feel free to shout out "Bravo!" (for a male performer), "Brava!" (for a woman) or "Bravi!" (for a group) - singers love an appreciative audience!
Enjoy the evening along with everyone else.
We ask everyone to ensure that they are respectful of the people around them by following some simple rules of etiquette.
- Perfume and cologne are fine, but moderation is appreciated.
- If you are going to have a candy or a cough drop, please unwrap them before coming into the Auditorium.
- Make sure all cell phones, pagers and other devices such as watch alarms are OFF.
- Once the orchestra begins (the overture is part of the opera, too!) please refrain from talking to those you are with so that everyone around you can enjoy the music. We encourage you to chat about the show during the intermission.
Opera is an exploration of the world around us - love, hatred, jealousy, laughter, happiness and sacrifice - on the stage, larger than life. It is an entertaining evening for people of all ages. Take your first step into the world of opera. Choosing the first opera you want to see may depend on your tastes in drama and music. Look at the descriptions of the operas we are presenting this season, especially the detailed story of the opera in the synopsis, and choose which opera is best for you. Of course, we would be happy to offer you some help or advice in deciding what may be most enjoyable for you.
Please contact the Opera Lyra Ottawa Box Office and our friendly staff will be happy to help.