BY JOSHUA VAN OSTRAND
Many think that opera is a dying art form but the Vera Causa Opera company stunned audience members with a flawless performance at the Kitchener Public Library on March 22. Over the free three-hour performance, several musicians sang and played pieces of music from both classical and modern opera. Vera Causa Opera is a non-profit opera company that was started to bring opera to audiences that don’t get the chance to experience it very often in their lives.
From a two-minute micro-opera about death repeated five times, to an operatic performance supported by an orchestra, it was clear that opera has a place in the Region of Waterloo. According to performers for Vera Causa Opera, the art form lives on thanks to the Kitchener-Waterloo Symphony and to students who call the region home – it’s even how several of the performers came to opera themselves.
“I was just a voice student for a long time,” said Rebecca Postma, Mezzo Soprano performing with Vera Causa Opera. “To go into undergraduate studies you have to specialize in either classical or jazz and I chose classical. I really enjoyed opera. I used to say that singing opera is like when you’re on a three-hour road trip and then you first step out of the car and stretch out.”
“The music program at Wilfrid Laurier is undergrad only,” said Connor O’Kane, one of the talented pianists for Vera Causa Opera. “So I think a lot of singers are attracted to Laurier because if they’re interested in opera, Laurier is a great place for them to get more opportunities for a starring role, whereas in Toronto or McGill, then starring roles might only go to master’s students.”
If opera is dying, it definitely doesn’t show its bones in the region. Many of the performers at the library on March 22 were young artists very dedicated to their craft.