LA Opera Open House

Make for the Dorothy Chandler for some high-spirited (and free) culture.

We don't know how the opera -- and we mean any opera anywhere -- got its somewhat stuffy, high-brow rep. The flouncy costumes? The big set pieces? Are those stuffy? Shyeah. Those. Are. Awesome!

Now don't get us wrong; we know not everyone views the great works, presented with drama and voice, that way. But we are happy to report our own opera is going to the distance to shake that buttoned-up appraisal.

Take the LA Opera's recent pre-Halloween sale. Name? "Attack of the Costume Shop." Not stuffy in the least. And then there's the free -- that's right, free -- open house on Saturday, Nov. 5.

There's a whole mess of doings during the day, and not one of them is devoid of humor or charm or all of the above. Expect a costume presentation, and a wig presentation, and a 30-minute opera that draws from Puccini's "Girl of the Golden West." It's specifically geared toward tomorrow's opera buff (read: kids). Oh, and if you miss the first one, they're going to do it again. Nice.

But why not make tomorrow's opera buff a buff today? Kids go to plays and concerts and other cultural doings; surely the opera has a place in there somewhere. Look at the photo above; it's a donkey-suited merrymaker at the LA Opera ticket window. So not boring. So whimsical.

Oh, and a man by the name of Placido Domingo will be singing. That is a ticketed event, note, so you'll want to eye the schedule for details. It looks as if there might be balcony seats remaining -- free seats -- at the time of this typing.

We highly recommend paying a visit to the Dorothy Chandler during the day, especially if your own kids are getting into theater. It's just a hop/skip/jump to the opera, and that isn't far at all.

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