Arizona Opera is so much more than what you see on the stage! Our Department of Education brings opera to more than 50,000 students through the Arlyn M. Brewster OperaTunity programs, Student Nights, and special student programs. Meet Diana Olivares – one of our Education Teaching Artists!
What is your favorite part of being a Brewster OperaTunity Artist?
I love seeing our performances impact the students in real time. We witness young kids go from not knowing anything about opera to being fully invested by the end of our show. Seeing their faces light up is my absolute favorite part because it shows the moment they become opera lovers! It’s also pretty darn cute.
What is your most memorable performance experience as a Brewster OperaTunity Artists and why?
Because our entire show is so well rehearsed and performed many times, I find that the most memorable moments are when something unplanned happens! Such as a button falling off a costume or a moment when our set takes just a second longer to adjust during a scene change. In those instances, I come to find just what wonderful colleagues I perform with as we all do whatever it takes to adjust and support one another. The audience is never able to tell that something has gone wrong!
How has being a Brewster OperaTunity artist impacted you?
On a personal level, being an OperaTunity artist has impacted me deeply. The busy rehearsal and performance schedule has provided me with conditioning as a physical performer and the daily and early performances have only helped to solidify my vocal technique. It is really moving to see children enjoy the opera and to think of what this experience means to them. I’ve worked with incredible stage directors, and have found the staff at Arizona Opera so supportive. I’ve also met the most incredibly talented singers who I’ve have the ‘opera-tunity’ to perform and grow as an artist with on a daily basis. This daily work with my colleagues bonds our troupe and I am most grateful to call my cast mates close friends.
If you could share one thing about your experience with the Arizona Opera community, what would it be?
Being an OperaTunity artist has further deepened my belief that exposure to opera is key! This work is meaningful and impactful because it is contributing to opera’s longevity. These students get to see opera at their school year after year and they will hopefully grow up to attend and support the opera as adults. And of course, it is also so much fun! Singing beautiful music day after day while planting the seeds for opera to have continued growth is a privilege and an honor.