THE DIVA OF DTLA

THE NA­TION’S YOUNGEST MA­JOR OPERA COM­PANY EN­TERS ITS FOURTH DECADE WITH A BIG BANG—AND A LOT OF BRAVOS.

Los Angeles Confidential - - Full Frontal - —charles trepany and spencer beck

Oft when the hoi pol­loi thinks of La La Land, vi­sions of ritzy awards shows, vast stu­dio lots, and brass stars on side­walks come to mind. The cul­ture-chal­lenged may not re­al­ize, how­ever, that this mecca of film and tele­vi­sion also fea­tures renowned per­for­mances in one of the world’s old­est and most re­spected art forms—a craft honed long be­fore the likes of Mar­i­lyn Mon­roe, Robert De Niro… or Kim Kardashian.

We’re talk­ing about opera, of course.

Although Hol­ly­wood es­tab­lished it­self as the cap­i­tal of the sil­ver screen by the early 1900s, the city did not gain a per­ma­nent opera venue un­til the LA Opera opened its doors just over 30 years ago. Now the com­pany, lo­cated at the Dorothy Chan­dler Pavil­ion in the Per­form­ing Arts Cen­ter of Los Angeles County, is the fourth largest opera house in the na­tion. And grow­ing.

In fact, when some of LA’s fa­vorite stars aren’t at­tend­ing red-carpet pre­mieres or sob­bing in front of a green screen, they can be found belt­ing out bravas Down­town. (A few even es­say the stage. Cheers com­edy leg­end Kelsey Gram­mer will costar in the LA Opera’s up­com­ing pro­duc­tion of Leonard Bern­stein’s Can­dide, open­ing early next year.) And then there’s the an­nual Opera Ball, which brings out le tout Hol­ly­wood and the crème de la crème of LA’s cul­ture club to cheer on gen­eral di­rec­tor Plá­cido Domingo, who will cel­e­brate the 50th an­niver­sary of his stage de­but here in Novem­ber.

Both crit­ics and celebs alike agree the LA Opera’s orig­i­nal, ground-break­ing stag­ings—in­clud­ing the up­com­ing Car­men, Or­pheus and Eury­dice, and Rigo­letto— chal­lenge the genre’s stuffy, Euro-cen­tric stereo­type. What else would you ex­pect from al­ways-fast-for­ward LA? 135 N. Grand Ave., 213-972-7219; la­opera.org

Bring it! Sing it! The LA Opera, at DTLA’s Dorothy Chan­dler Pavil­ion (bot­tom left), toasts 30 years of opera in­no­va­tion, with ground-break­ing stag­ings of (clock­wise from top left) The Ghosts of Ver­sailles (2015), The Tales of Hoff­mann (2017), and La...

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