Sowing the seeds for a wider audience of opera lovers
At a recent concert in the Xintiandi Entertainment District, tenor Han Peng and soprano Song Qian performed in front of an audience that included workers at the construction site of the new Shanghai Grand Opera.
The concert kicked off the third annual edition of Project Artree, a campaign bringing together the world of fine art and the general public. The project is sponsored by the Shanghai Grand Theater Arts Group, Huangpu District and SAIC Motor.
Artree is focusing on opera this year, having focused on ballet and the traditional string instrument guqin in the first two years. The selected audience will be able to attend opera rehearsals, receive vocal training and even perform on stage with professionals.
The theme of the opera seems particularly appropriate with the completion of the Shanghai Grand Opera in Pudong New Area just two or three years old. The Grand Theater Arts Group said it hopes to sow greater interest in opera and ensure a larger audience when the new venue opens.
“The name Artree Project refers to the art planting, like trees among the citizens,” said Zhang Songhua, chairman of the performing arts group. “I hope this non-profit platform will be a bridge between the fine arts and the general public.”
Following on from the 2021 inaugural concert, soprano Song will give a public lecture on October 29, sharing her personal and performance experiences in European cities. On November 3, tenor Han will join a cappella group ChanG’pera for a performance in Jiading District.
On October 10, sopranos He Xiaonan and Zhou Chen will share their views on the Shanghai Opera’s Patriotic Opera “Sister Jiang”.
On November 13, citizens will be invited to the Shanghai Opera rehearsal hall to see how an opera performance is prepared.
On December 19, Shanghai Opera performers will perform a “Balcony Opera Concert” at the Shanghai Concert Hall.
The project will also include a series of singing lessons until the end of November. Approximately 30 people will have the opportunity to attend weekly vocal workshops with opera singers and professional teachers, including learning how the singers draw inspiration from the conductor and orchestra during a performance .
On December 4, selected participants of the vocal workshop will perform at an opera gala at the Shanghai Grand Theater, with professionals.