To get young audience, opera to stage in bar

By Laura Stace

The Florida Grand Opera inked a deal last week that will put opera on the stage of a trendy Design District bar.

"I think putting opera in a place where no one would expect to see it is a great way to start to break down all those stereotypes of what the art form is," said Susan Danis, opera general director and CEO.

From March 21-24, The Florida Grand Opera will perform double bill performances of Ástor Piazzolla's "Maria de Buenos Aires" and Robert Xavier Rodriguez' "Tango" at The Stage, at 170 NE 38th St. 

"Doing a production such as this gives the Florida Grand Opera the opportunity to reach out to new audiences, such as the younger crowd of art lovers that already frequent Wynwood and the Design District," said Maestro Ramon Tebar, the opera's music director.

"It also lets us break the stereotypes about the opera being stuffy or boring." 

The project was funded by the Knight Foundation. 

Mr. Tebar said the original idea proposed to the Knight Foundation was to present a rarely performed work in a place where no one would ever expect to see an opera.

He said the Florida Grand Opera elected to produce a double bill of two shorter-than-average operas that revolve around tango music. "This production is not only sultry and captivating, but the music itself is a fusion of several cultures — Spanish, Italian, French and African — which makes it ideal for a city like Miami," Mr. Tebar said.



About the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation

Knight Foundation supports transformational ideas that promote quality journalism, advance media innovation, engage communities and foster the arts. We believe that democracy thrives when people and communities are informed and engaged. For more, visit