11 July 2010

Philly Opera rules the flash mob

Standing among the the crowd at the Reading Terminal Market on 24 April 2010, members of the Philadelphia Opera Company treated the crowd to "Flash Brindisi".

The company piped Verdi's "La traviata" over the loudspeakers, and broke into song within the amazed crowd. Cell phones frantically captured the performance on video, as young and old alike were enchanted by what seemed at first to be impromptu karaoke. The crowd quickly realized what was happening, and stopped their busy shopping to enjoy the performance. The performers engaged some of the more willing viewers in mini-serenades.

What a great way to celebrate opera, and advertise for the opera company. These days it's easy to dismiss opera as elitist or out of touch, but this performance reminded everyone in the marketplace that opera can be just as lighthearted as any modern form of music. It truly brought the opera to the average person.

This was an innovative twist on the flash mob. Edmonton Opera, are you listening?