Talk:Opera

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Former featured article candidateOpera is a former featured article candidate. Please view the links under Article milestones below to see why the nomination failed. For older candidates, please check the archive.
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June 28, 2007Featured article candidateNot promoted

Contemporary Singers[edit]

I think a section listing many of the most famous contemporary opera singers - Renee Fleming, Audra McDonald etc - would be useful for readers looking to learn more about opera in today's context. Thoughts? Kstetson (talk) 21:09, 12 November 2013 (UTC)

you are free to add sources, but always reliable sources, Thanks.--Bolzanobozen (talk) 15:28, 27 August 2017 (UTC)

Such a silly (and boring) picture[edit]

Paris is a city famous for the ballet; when it comes to opera one thinks of Milan, Vienna or New York. But above all an article about opera should start with a picture focused on stage action - NOT on a building. Furthermore the Palais Garnier, beautiful as it is, is far from ideal for an opera house; it was built for wealthy Parisians to show off in and most of the building is front of house - and the stage is very limited. In the Vienna State Opera two thirds of the building is backstage which makes all the difference. In Paris they had to construct the new Bastille Opera in order to provide an adequate home for large operas whereas Vienna and Milan are still 100% functional.--Meister und Margarita (talk) 16:52, 21 January 2014 (UTC)

I tend to agree about the image. How about File:Vienna - Vienna Opera main auditorium - 9825.jpg or File:Callas-La-sonnambula.JPG (La Scala). It's not easy to find good quality pictures with stage action on Commons. What there is is so close up and without the stage and house interior to serve as context, they could be a scene from a play. Voceditenore (talk) 18:00, 21 January 2014 (UTC)
Three potential images for consideration File:La Traviata in Sankt Margarethen - Bühnenbild offen (Bild 1).jpg, File:DuPage Opera La Boheme.JPG or File:Zauberfloete.jpg Otherwise in the absence of a more vibrant stage image and without the potential copyright issues relating to the Callas picture, how about something a little more classical File:Aida poster colors fixed.jpg Mighty Antar (talk) 22:35, 21 January 2014 (UTC)
Meister und Margarita call the picture of the Palais Garnier beautiful and I don't think it is "silly and boring". If you look at the top of this page, you might recognise it in the logos of the WikiProject Opera. Criticising the choice of an image by pointing out deficiencies in the functionality as an opera house misses the point in a big way. Note the the Opera Project's previous logo was the Sydney Opera House which is probably less functional than the Garnier. MuM's "solution" to the perceived problem was to reduce the image's size, a less than imaginative approach. Others have suggested some alternatives:
  • the extreme distortion of the Vienna State Opera's auditorium is a bit disconcerting;
  • Callas at La Scala is very evocative, although her identity is not clear without a caption and the image's copyright status is a bit dubious;
  • I submit that an outdoor production of La traviata is not the best picture to lead this article;
  • That leaves La bohème and Die Zauberflöte at rather obscure companies, but, if pressed, the image from the DuPage Opera Theatre has more charm than the Augsburg Zauberflöte.
But none reach the iconic stature of the Palais Garnier. I suggest to keep this image which has been here (in slightly different versions) for more than 3 years. -- Michael Bednarek (talk) 05:20, 22 January 2014 (UTC)
I agree. The Palais Garnier is not only beautiful, but says "Opera" in an iconic way that the other options do not (however functional its stage may be). Markhh (talk) 05:47, 22 January 2014 (UTC)
I personally feel that the exterior of any building, no matter how famous or beautiful of a venue for opera, is less than ideal for the lead of the opera article. I much prefer an "action shot" of an actual opera performance. Further, the excellent Palais Garnier photograph might be a better choice for the lead of the French opera article.4meter4 (talk) 20:10, 22 January 2014 (UTC)
I think the image of the Scala of Milan is a good example for the Opera.Bolzanobozen (talk) 15:30, 27 August 2017 (UTC)

Tragedy and comedy, or opera seria and opera buffa?[edit]

In 2.2.2 Mozart's operas Così fan tutte, Le Nozze di Figaro, and Don Giovanni are described as comedies, a definition that is incompatible with the latter, as Don Giovanni is dramaturgically better classified as a tragedy. Because of this, I'll be changing the term comedies for comic operas, feel free to talk with me about this. Gottliber (talk) 04:13, 18 July 2017 (UTC)

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Contradiction in lead[edit]

These two sentences in the lead seem to contradict each other:

  • "Opera is a form of theatre in which music has a leading role and the parts are taken by singers, but is distinct from musical theater."
  • "Originally understood as an entirely sung piece, in contrast to a play with songs, opera has come to include numerous genres, including some that include spoken dialogue such as musical theater."

Is musical theater included in opera or distinct from it? Kaldari (talk) 03:07, 8 February 2019 (UTC)

That depends on musical theater (any stage work with music, probably not meant) and musical theatre, a specific genre. --Gerda Arendt (talk) 08:20, 8 February 2019 (UTC)
Gerda, are you suggesting that the UK & US spellings have different meanings? Really they don't. Johnbod (talk) 17:59, 8 February 2019 (UTC)
Gerda is right about the ambiguous meaning of "musical theatre". Anyway, the phrase was added on 9 January by an IP editor, which also involved citation hijacking. I suggest to remove that phrase ("but is distinct from musical theater") and also from "include spoken dialogue such as musical theater" until we find a better way of expressing the difference. Further, that footnote after "Opera is a key part of the Western classical music tradition." should be removed as well. A footnote is not the place to elaborate on the distinction to other performance art. What the article needs is a new section, "What is opera"/"Characteristics"/"Definition" – no doubt not an easy subject. Until then, and to eliminate the obvious and recently introduced contradiction noted by Kaldari, the term "musical theatre" should be removed from the lead. -- Michael Bednarek (talk) 14:08, 8 February 2019 (UTC)
Opera is "distinct from musical theater", with a rather small overlap that the lead can ignore. The second bit "including some that include spoken dialogue such as musical theater." should drop the last 4 words. Johnbod (talk) 17:59, 8 February 2019 (UTC)
I think Gerda is commenting on the inherently ambiguous term "musical theat[re|er]" which can refer to "musicals", as the genre is known in almost every language, or to its literal meaning, "theatrical performance that combines singing, spoken dialogue, acting and dance", an art form that is called "Musiktheater [Wikidata]" in many languages and which indeed includes musicals and opera, and more. There is no term in English for this wider category, and I think that's where the need for demarcation in both articles, "Opera" and "Musical theatre", comes from.
… that the lead can ignore and drop the last 4 words: I agree. -- Michael Bednarek (talk) 07:01, 9 February 2019 (UTC)