Five Upcoming Opportunities To Introduce Opera to Kids

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PicMonkey CollageOpera isn’t at the top of my radar for family fun.  It seems a little inaccessible to children and very expensive for something I’m not sure they will enjoy.  However, this season, it has been popping up repeatedly. In November, Minnesota Opera performed Hansel & Gretal — my favorite, and really only, opera I know.  Unfortunately, I was uncomfortably pregnant and uninterested in outings.  Luckily, for anyone who loves opera or is just curious, like me, we have some opportunities coming up in the coming weeks.

Guaranteed to cure the winter doldrums

Where or When: Broadway in the Thirties

Skylark Opera – Sundays at Landmark
Sunday, March 1, 2015 at 1:00 p.m.
Landmark Center, 75 W. 5th St., Saint Paul
Parking and directions available at

This coming Sunday, the Skylark Opera will be performing Broadway songs from the 1930s in a casual, family-friendly setting for their spring concert at the Landmark Center.  While you are there, reader Michelle highly recommends checking out the Schubert Museum, full of cool instruments, while you are visiting the Landmark. Skylark strives for listener-friendly performances by performing in  English in intimate venues.  The price combined with the casual setting makes this a good option for families and first-timers.

Conducting the concert will be Dale Kruse, Project Opera Music Director, and Claudette Laureano, Co-Artistic Director and Conductor for the MYS Repertory Orchestra.

Mozart for the Young at Heart

Minnesota Opera and Minnesota Youth Symphonies (MYS)
Wednesday, March 4, 2015 at 7:30 p..m
The new Concert Hall at Ordway, 345 Washington St., St. Paul, MN 55102
Adult — $15; Children — $5

Next Wednesday, two teen programs, the Minnesota Opera’s Project Opera and MYS will perform a number of Mozart operas in a one-hour performance. I find 45 minutes to be the preschool limit for these things, but grade school and up would probably do okay.

Children are encouraged to participate!

Opera Viva! Through the Eyes and Ears of Mozart

Minnesota Opera residency at Hennepin County Library continues
Saturday, March 21, 2015; 1:00 p.m.
Eden Prairie Library, 565 Prairie Center Dr., 612-543-6275
Saturday, April 18, 2015; 1:00 p.m.
Wayzata Library at Wayzata City Hall, 600 Rice St., 612-543-6150

Minnesota Opera is doing a series of programs through the Hennepin County Library. The two above are geared toward kids. Participants will learn about and even have a chance to perform with professional opera singers.  You can Register online or by calling the library.

Lorenzo da Ponte, librettist. David Walsh, director. Mark Russell Smith, conductor

University Opera Theatre presents W.A. Mozart’s
 “Le nozze di Figaro”

Thursday, April 16, 2015; 7:30 p.m.
Friday, April 17, 2015; 7:30 pm
Saturday, April 18, 2015; 7:30 pm
Sunday, April 19; 2015; 1:30 pm
Ted Mann Concert Hall, 2128 4th Street S. Minneapolis, MN 55455
$20 Adults/$5 U of M students and children. (Two for one tickets for U of M faculty, alumni, retirees, and staff)

I have not attended a U of M Concert.  Prices for kids are very affordable, which leads me to believe they will be child friendly. Each performance has a discussion that begins 45 minutes before the show.  Keep in mind that you will probably have to pay for parking.

At Home

If you are not ready for an opera outing or if you want to supplement at home you can learn quite a bit on the internet.  I’ve shared the interactive Hansel and Gretal before, but it’s a good place to start.  Don’t forget the way we learned about opera as a kid — from Bugs Bunny.





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About the author

Joy Peters

Joy Peters - co-creator and writer for

Besides Family Fun Twin Cities, I spend my 9 to 5 at a day job pursuing my weird passion for calendars and organizing things as a legal secretary. When I get home I spend my time with my four kids, 10, 6, 4 and 1. My amazing husband is both a full-time musician and full-time stay-at-home dad. Together we run a small radio empire — SiaNet Radio — playing, promoting and enjoying the wide variety of local music and art in the Twin Cities. I juggle all this while writing about exploring the Twin Cities with kids. I couldn’t be happier.

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