Monday, July 19, 2010

What's on tap? Opera!

Opera on Tap is known for taking opera out of stuffy opera houses and bringing it where it belongs (in bars) — and now the group is going outdoors.

For two Mondays in July, the Old Stone House in Park Slope becomes home to the comedic highs of “Barber of Seville” (tonight) and the dramatic lows of “Carmen” (July 26).

For opera purists, don’t expect the standard three-plus hour performances; both productions will be geared toward children, pared down to less than an hour, with the scripts rewritten for humorous retellings in English and excerpts from the songs sung in the original language.

“ ‘Carmen’ and ‘Barber of Seville’ represent two of the most famous and recognizable pieces in the whole operative repertoire,” said Anne Ricci, general manager of Opera on Tap. “I also like the idea of contrasting a tragedy versus a comedy — I want to give a full spectrum to kids what opera’s all about.”

For the adults in the audience, coming to hear Rossini’s famous cavatinas in “Barber” or Bizet’s “Habanera” aria in “Carmen,” they won’t be left out, either.

“We’ve targeted this to slightly a older kids audience, but we’ve included more veiled adult humor,” said Ricci. “We’re shooting for The Muppets in terms of our humor level.”

Opera on Tap at the Old Stone House [Fifth Avenue at Third Street in Park Slope, (718) 768-3195], with “Barber of Seville” on July 19 and “Carmen” on July 26 at 6 pm. Free. For info, visit


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