The Barber of Seville for Preschool

Opera Ignite is excited to partner with Toledo Opera for the fourth year to bring “An Opera is a Story” to preschoolers. This year, children in eight Toledo Public School classrooms will be exploring the music and characters from The Barber of Seville… “Fiiigaro! Fiiigaro!”

The residency is designed to support language, literacy and social-emotional skills through interactive explorations of opera stories. Teaching Artist, Christina Farrell, selected themes from the opera that relate to young children’s learning and life experiences. Since the plot of The Barber of Seville focuses on trickery and hidden identities, the children begin each lesson by imagining the Overture music “sneaking” into their bodies. They must listen carefully for cues in the music that tell them how their bodies should move. They meet four characters from the story and sing short refrains for each. The children are encouraged to add their own details, such as the kinds of tricky costumes Count Almaviva might wear (…many children suggest Batman or Elsa!) Finally, they are asked to offer advice to the characters for how to resolve their differences. The final visit to the classroom will feature a mini-performance so the children can have an experience as audience members.

This year, we are also thrilled to partner with Lisa Gruenhagen, Ph.D., from Bowling Green State University, who is researching the impacts of “An Opera is a Story.”      

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