Your Opera Experience
Whether you’re attending your first opera, it’s your first time at Opera in the Ozarks, or your first time in the beautiful Ozarks mountains; we want you to feel comfortable and have a sense of what to expect. We also want you to get the most out of our unique experience and so we’ve anticipated and answered a few questions below. If you have a question you don’t see answered here, please write us.
What should I wear?
Just because you’re attending an opera doesn’t mean you shouldn’t be comfortable! Opera in the Ozarks doesn’t have a dress code; so if you’d like to dress up or dress down, please feel free to do so. Because our opera season is in the summer and in an outdoor theatre, we recommend you dress comfortably and dress cool. The good news is that air-conditioning was installed for our 64th season.
How will I follow the plot if it’s not in English?
Although Opera in the Ozarks performs many of its operas in their original languages, we also project English supertitles above our stage. While our artists are singing in French, German, or Italian, you’ll be able to follow the words and the actions in English.
How early should we arrive?
Our performances begin at 7:30 p.m. with an Opera Talk at 7:00 p.m. If you would like to hear the Opera Talk we suggest you arrive 20-30 minutes before 7:00 to find a parking spot and look around. If you’re only coming for a performance, arriving 30-40 minutes before 7:30 p.m. should leave you enough time to find a parking spot and your seat.
For our Arend Arts Center performances, the curtain time is 3:00 p.m. There is no Opera Talk for these performances, so we suggest you arrive 30-40 minutes before curtain.
Being on time to a performance is a courtesy to other opera goers who are seated and listening attentively. Late-comers may not be seated until a break or an intermission.
What is the Opera Talk?
The Opera Talk is your chance to hear a sneak preview of the opera you’ll be seeing that evening. Our General Director, Nancy Preis, generally leads our Opera Talks and you’ll also hear from 2 or 3 of our singers. The singers usually talk about the characters they play and musical devices you should listen for. Time allowing, they will answer any questions you have about the opera or their experiences at Opera in the Ozarks.
Is there a concession stand or restaurant on premise?
We do have a small concession stand where we sell water only. We suggest making an evening out of attending one of our performances and enjoy one of the many fine restaurants in Eureka Springs, just 6 miles east of our theatre. Please see our area attractions page for some dining ideas.
When do I clap?
As a general rule of thumb, there are a few key places where clapping is a good idea:
When the conductor comes out to start the overture.
After a particularly well-sung aria.
At the end of an act or the end of the opera when the singers are taking bows.
If you’re unsure of where to clap, following the crowd is always a good idea for your first experience at an opera.
Also, feel free to shout “Bravo!” if you’ve heard or seen something you really enjoyed. Although, the word you shout changes depending on the situation. Here is a quick “Bravo” guide:
Say Bravo (Brah-voh) for a male performer’s exceptional performance.
Say Brava (Brah-vah) for a female performer’s exceptional performance.
Say Bravi (Brah-vee) for a group’s exceptional performance.
What are some other reminders for attending an opera?
- Please turn off all cell phones and beepers before the opera begins.
- Please refrain from talking during the performance. This includes talking during the Overture because in many operas the overture can be a “highlight reel” of what to expect musically and dramatically on stage.
- Please do not hum or sing along with the performers. If you’d like to sing with us, please ask about our auditions!