It’s not often that you see children at the opera and especially not singing on stage alongside the opera singers.
Local children are taking advantage of this extraordinary opportunity during Florida Grand Opera’s latest production of Puccini’s La bohème, which opened Nov. 17 at the Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts of Miami-Dade.
Opera is a sophisticated art form that calls for mature voices, so they rarely feature roles for children. One of the exceptions is La boheme, the popular opera that inspired the musical Rent, which highlights a children’s chorus as well as a one-line child soloist in the second act.
The youngsters who sing in this production are members of the Miami Children’s Chorus, a non-profit organization based in Coral Gables, and have been in rehearsals with Florida Grand Opera since early October.
“These kids have never been in an opera before. Every day is a new day for them, and they get more and more excited as we approach each new performance,” says Tim Sharp, music director of the Miami Children’s Chorus and former Florida Grand Opera chorister.
Flight to Freedom by John Angée was the first piece chosen for the Coral Gables Art in Public Places Program, which began in February 2010.
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