Exploring Opera

Ref: C2337944

We will watch on dvd a selection of operas, designed to give a representative view of the genre. By discussing the various aspects which make up an opera- e.g. music, libretto, singers, orchestra, production - you will be able to form a judgment on how opera does what it does! The course will help you to watch opera with greater understanding of how the initial idea of a composer for an opera ends up as a final production on the stage. It is a very interesting journey.

Course aim

This course explores a variety of operas, from the popular to the unfamiliar, touching a whole range of emotions. Be thrilled, moved, amused and surprised in equal measure.

Do I need any particular skills or experience?

  • No skills or experience needed

By the end of the course I should be able to:

  • To watch opera with increasing understanding
  • To show awareness of the music and historical context of an opera
  • To show awareness of different operatic styles
  • To demonstrate knowledge of how an opera is put together

How will I be taught?

  • The WEA tutor will use a range of different teaching and learning methods and encourage you and the group to be actively involved in your learning

What kind of feedback can I expect?

  • A range of informal activities will be used by the tutor to see what you are learning which may include quizzes, question and answer, small projects and discussion
  • You will have opportunities to discuss your progress with your tutor

What else do I need to know?

  • Nothing else is needed

Pre-course work, reading and information sources

  • No pre reading or pre course work is required
  • A reading list will be suggested at the first meeting but is not compulsory

What can I do next?

  • Progress to another WEA course

Download full course outline

Exploring Opera Course Outline


You can if you meet all of the following requirements:

  • are paying the standard fee or are on any of the qualifying benefits
  • are paying with a credit/debit card or are not paying a fee because of a qualifying benefit
  • have a valid email address
  • have been resident in the UK, EU or EEA for the last 3 years
  • are aged 19 years or older on 1st September 2017
  • have read and accept the standard terms and conditions
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