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“Welcoming rather than intimidating”

Opera Theatre of Saint Louis
Ranked #84 of 270 things to do in Saint Louis
Attraction details
Reviewed 2 July 2014 via mobile

Many years have passed between my OTSL trips and the delay will not be as long next time. Every interaction with staff was characterized by genuine hospitality - from the ticket booth advising me about options for improving my seat to the ushers cheerfully escorting me to my seat at each performance.

Productions were interesting and the quality of both leads and chorus was excellent. As others have mentioned, the sight lines are good and intimate size enhances the experience.

This is not your grandmother's opera - young, old, and all ages in between can enjoy OTSL!

1  Thank LizTh
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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15 - 19 of 32 reviews

Reviewed 1 July 2014

Opera Theatre of St., Louis is playing in the big leagues for summer opera this year. Based on the Wall St. Journal review, we decided to take advantage of the deal that the opera offers for three operas in one weekend, seeing 27 (the new opera based on Gertrude Stein's life in Paris with Alice B. Toklas), the Dialogue of the Carmelites and the Magic Flute. The performances of 27 and Dialogue were world class, and that of the Magic Flute was certainly OK. While the performances in Webster Grove were a little out of the way from downtown St. Louis, the actual driving time was around 20 minutes from our hotel, and thus very do-able. The venue is a part of Webster University, but the acoustics were OK in the several locations in which we were seated. The opera is making a serious bid for inclusion in the Santa Fe Opera/Glimmerglass class for summer operas, and we will certainly try to return next summer!

1  Thank BobFran_11
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 26 June 2014

We have attended Opera Theatre of St. Louis for several years and have never been disappointed. As other reviewers have mentioned, the relatively small sized theater adds to the enjoyment. Vision is good from all seats and the supertitles are positioned in multiple locations. The performers have always been excellent; chorus as well as leads. Best of all, it is easy to attend--free parking available in the Garden Ave garage (close enough to return your picnic supplies to the car before the opera begins), casual or dressy attire, plus a beautiful campus to stroll during intermission. Opera Theatre of St. Louis also performs new operas such as "Champion" last year or this year's "27" which tell wonderful and meaningful stories. This is an excellent opportunity for new opera-goers or seasoned veterans as well!

Thank 35,912
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 25 June 2014

We took in "Dialogue of the Carmelites" last Friday, and it moved me to tears. It is the story of 16 Carmelite nuns guillotined during the French Revolution. The staging was austere, appropriate for the story. I am hardly an opera buff, but not allergic to it either. The singing was outstanding, and, even though we were in the cheap seats on the far left, our sight lines were good. All operas are sung in English, and supertitles are provided as well. If you are at all tempted to give opera a try, this is the place to go.

1  Thank TomKopff
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 23 June 2014

Opera Theater of St. Louis is a delightful experience that refutes many of the current, unfortunate stereotypes about opera while still being fully professional with top-notch designers and singers. First, the performance is not way far up on a distant stage - there is no vast orchestra pit separating the actors from the audience (the musicians are literally below the stage) - the thrust stage and small size of the theater puts you literally within a few feet of these amazing singers and creates an intimacy that enhances your experience. Second, because of the limited size, the productions are not overblown with massive scenery and a multitude of spear-carriers (although they certainly can do numbers of people when called for). Third, while performing all the operas in English may sometimes make the words and sounds not quite as the composer intended, it does make the meaning more accessible even with the supertitles and for the most part the translations are excellent. Fourth, the atmosphere is delightfully casual and accessible for everyone - whether or not you are a "fan" of opera in general you will enjoy the opportunity to picnic on the lawn before the performance and have a nightcap or dessert in the lawn tent after the performance. Finally, for me the most charming and special tradition here is that after every performance the singers come out to the tent and mingle informally with the audience members and friends over a glass of wine or a cup of gelato. In the past week alone my family and I have had delightful chats with several stars and upcoming stars such as Rene Barbera, Kelly Kaduce and Susannah Biller. If you like opera, you will especially like it here; if you think you don't like opera, give it a try for the overall experience and I think you will be pleasantly surprised.

2  Thank jdf48
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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