No Phantoms- Just Opera – Our 1st time watching an Opera

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My friend Amanda and I got to share our first opera experience together.

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We tried the trapeze together to celebrate our birthdays a few years ago and felt that it seemed appropriate to try another first together to celebrate this year.

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My knowledge of the opera was limited to clips showcased from the movie “Pretty Woman” and of course the praises of  “The Phantom of the Opera.”

I have heard that the opera evokes strong feelings.  Typically you either love it or you hate it.  I was hoping we would love it because otherwise it would be a very long night.

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The rain that evening gave us a different angle of the parking lot and  a view of the back entry to Cincinnati Music Hall.

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The building is beautiful and has so must history.

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Here is a view of the front side from a few evenings before.

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It looks even better at night.

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The inside is also beautifully detailed.  The ceilings even have bragging rights.

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We swapped picture taking duties with a couple who was also trying to figure out how to get a picture together.

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Then we grabbed a drink, followed by a visit to the snack table.

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There were going to be two intermissions.  We chose cinnamon roasted almonds and chocolate covered pretzels to take us through the evening.

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Chocolate is always good in case you are having a long night and the jury was still out on whether we would enjoy what we had yet to see.

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The lobby was buzzing with excitement.  We moved on to people watching for a bit.  We could not feel fancy standing by the snack table so we stood around the center of the room and acted like we belonged there and that we had done this before.  The crowd wore everything from jeans to tuxes and fancy dresses, we even saw elastic pants.

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After taking in the crowds, we made our way to our seats.  They were at the highest level but the seats were pretty good, thanks to a connection with a high school classmate who was performing with the opera that night.

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Our newbie cover was blown when I asked the ushers to take our picture and then I started taking pics of the ceiling.

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I couldn’t help it, the detail of the artwork was amazing!

As the opera began, I thought I recognized the music.  After googling during the intermission, I found out that we were watching the opera showcased in the movie “Pretty Woman.”  I was pretty excited for the connection.

The music and singing was so beautiful.  I’m typically the type of person who looks at the program and counts how many songs they are going to sing until the musical will be over.

This was very different and perfect for an ADD personality.

You could watch the symphony.

You could read the subtitles.

You could look at the detailed costumes and stage set.

You could try to figure out the plot.

You could just listen to how amazing a foreign language sounds in song form.


I couldn’t take pictures during the performance but these are great shots from the Cincinnati Opera.

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We were amazed to be enjoying it as much as we were.  The woman sitting next to me said that we were at a great one for our first.  She also told me that some of the other operas are more light hearted and comedic.  I would like to see the contrast.

My friend and I both really enjoyed our first opera experience and would love to go again in the future.  It was way better than I thought it would be and I have a new appreciation of this form of art.


If you want to see an opera at Cincinnati Music Hall, check out the Cincinnati Opera website. Learn more about “La Traviata” here.

Use this site to find the nearest opera near you.

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