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RED Ópera Independiente: In opera it is also sown

By Victoria Roldán, General Director of Lyric Soul Music Productions and Lyric Soul Foundation

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It is a fact that opera throughout Latin America is growing by leaps and bounds. It was unthinkable 1 decade ago, that there could be so many independent companies or even, this type of proposal, the most stable and 100% realizable.

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Producing independent opera is something so complex, that in a certain way the producers not only take each project in a very personal way assuming enormous risks, but considering the minimum resources that we have, really a suspension or a lean box office can be the beginning of the end, which does not matter how many extra rehearsals take us or how many changes have to be made, the opera goes out or comes out.

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The independent companies, have found in the productions at the piano or in chamber orchestras, an incredible ally to “be able to do”; and they are, in turn, a hotbed of great figures, becoming absolute providers of official lyrics, since it is in those scenarios where artists really do their integral education and that experience is what leads them to be considered in larger instances. Only in Buenos Aires, Argentina, in any production Off an agent could find singers, directors, technicians or producers as capable as those that could find in a theater of reputation, imagine that that happens in every country of America.

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But, while the Off medium is a continuous source of creativity and originality, it is fair to point out some points that should be reinforced in the way of producing because they may be the ones that constitute the Achilles heel of the independent lyric.

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There are several observable issues in almost every country. First, there is a great lack of knowledge about how to take a project to an administrative, legal and contractual level. There is no real awareness when setting up an opera, that not only must be neat and beautiful what is on stage, but also must be the pillar of any project that is production. So many small groups seek savings, in tax evasion, non-payment of musical rights or even worse in not taking the corresponding insurance for participants. This situation not only speaks of a great untidiness, but of a way of producing unnecessarily dangerous, for the public, the cast and the assistants. Although it is also the respondents’ responsibility to ask these questions to their producers or directors.

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Another important factor that makes the independent media not finish flourishing, has to do with the egos, which at times take the direction of the projects, creating great frictions that do not do well to the unit of the team itself, much less make possible a unity between companies.

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But any criticism must be accompanied by a solution or a responsible proposal that contributes to the improvement. Thus, OPERA Opera Independiente emerges, which goes beyond being a connector between existing groups that wish to grow, but which contains a complete training program and efficient (opera school), which is available to all who want to start doing opera, whether institutions or individuals.

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It is a way of working at the root of the problem, sharing knowledge and tools that help each group to improve their performances and obtain higher economic returns. Educating and gestating within similar parameters, it is easier to create bridges between companies, whether from the same country or abroad. This favors the flow of productions, facilitates co-productions, the exchange of artists and extends the possibility of obtaining resources through sponsorship.

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This is a slow work, which is already underway and which adds adepts day by day. It will be the new generations of entrepreneurs and artists, who may see the light through collaborative work, something that the great theaters have been doing for years and is the basis of their growth.

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Because we are not only in a moment where it is essential to unite to be stronger, organized and therefore recognized, but because it is also essential to open more reliable and safe jobs, so that all artists can live what they love and for that all citizens can enjoy opera in their city. We have to be able to offer top-notch education both in a large metropolis and in any other part of a country and we must find a way to generate strong and profitable spaces, so that thousands of artists and technicians have a space to develop without having to emigrate.

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Consider, that this great change that is approaching in the opera off, will be the step that will make this medium come to light in a more intense and professional way and it will be the moment in which the great theaters will have to recognize that this medium is emerging and in constant growth, the one that provides them with great figures that later shine in their scenarios.

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That is why the opera is planted … it is planted slowly and with a firm objective: To make this medium a more just, respectful, collaborative place. A medium that represents the true potential of our artists and for this we need training programs, off projects of excellent quality and administratively well taken, so that the artistic directors of the great theaters and companies, raise their eyes and look beyond the singers or current stars directors. We need a connection between networks, and above all we need more humility in the middle.

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Grow with love, with collaboration, contributing each one what you can, with responsibility and with firmness. Many may say that it is a utopia, but in Lyric Soul we are working so that America has the half off it deserves. For us, it is not a utopia, but it is already a reality.

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More information about our programs and projects in www.lyricsoul.com.ar

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Buenos Aires, February 22, 2018

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