Virtual Yarra Valley Opera Festival

Welcome to Gertrude Opera's digital festival! Gertrude Opera and the Yarra Valley Opera Festival are moving with the topsy-turvy times, and 'pivoting' to digital delivery of a quirky and eclectic contemporary program for 2020.

From the 16th to the 25th of October there is a packed program offering opera & concert by video, a podcast, pop-up streams & Q&A-style forum, all from the comfort of your own home.


Event details

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Events include:
Friday October 16
7pm - 9pm
We open with a Gala-at-Home featuring exclusive performances by some of our guest and young singers from the past 11 years. Hosted by yours truly and Maestro Brian Castles-Onion AM, we'll kick off with a vocal fanfare from the balcony of YAVA in the main street of Healesville in the Yarra Valley, and then 'travel' to hear from our artists in various stages of lockdown in Europe, UK, China, Hong Kong, Mexico, USA, NZ and all around Australia.

Saturday October 17
7pm - 8pm
GO presents the Australian premiere of Oscar-nominated composer David Lang's contemporary chamber opera love fail, in collaboration with our US partners, Monk Parrots. Director/designer Luke Leonard is crafting video with digital effects in upstate New York to accompany the performance by GO singers here in Melbourne.

Sunday October 18
2pm - 2:45pm
A podcast of our favourite children's opera Figatroll!
In association with YAVA Gallery and Arts Hub, we will be running a school-age Set and Costume Design Challenge with commended and winning entries to be displayed in a 'virtual exhibition' on the YAVA website for the duration of the Festival. Judging panel includes Oscar-winning and The Masked Singer designer Tim Chappel.

Weekdays, 5pm - 5:30pm
from Monday October 19
'Ariarchitecture' a pop-up series, taking place on private properties of architectural significance in the Yarra Valley and Dandenong Ranges. Usually hidden from sight, these homes will be the backdrop for our young artists singing arias from contemporary operas - merging structure, materials, light, landscape with story-telling, music and beautiful voices.

Friday October 23
8pm - 9pm
Together, Apart
Blurring the lines between opera, jazz, rock, music theatre and pop, we're presenting a 2016 vocal work by young Australian creators: Nicholas Gentile, composer and Lincoln Hall, librettist - in an 'empty chairs at empty tables' cabaret format.

Saturday October 24
7pm - 8pm
Kate Kelly
Giving voice to Ned's sister Kate, and originally performed 9 years ago in Forbes NSW as a solo song cycle, we're bringing this Australian chamber opera by Merrill Findlay (librettist) and Ross Carey (composer) to life with 3 singers, accordion, violin, cello and clarinet. A logistical feat, with the three principal singers in different states (Tasmania, Sydney and Melbourne). Such is life...

Sunday October 25
10:30am - 12noon
Q&A Style Forum, hosted by RACV Healesville Country Club
Opera and the nature of work - is it a real job? With a panel of distinguished experts on economics, law and the arts, looking forward to answering your burning questions and engaging in discussion around the future of opera as industry. With a surprise pop-up to finish.

Optional add-on
various times from Sat Oct 17 - Sun Oct 25
Onsite Opera's To My Distant Love
A one-to-one, via telephone immersive experience. A choice of soprano, tenor or baritone to engage with, in a live audio performance of Beethoven's To My Distant Beloved (An die ferne Geliebte). Our first collaboration with NY-based Onsite Opera.

Ticket prices:
Gold Pass (full access, excluding To My Distant Beloved) $75
Gala, love fail, Together Apart, Kate Kelly $30 each
Figatroll podcast $20
To My Distant Beloved add-on at $75
Ariarchitecture - free
Q&A-Style Forum - free