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Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Bicycle Opera Project gears up with expanded tour | CBC News

The Bicycle Opera Project invades Hamilton, Ont. The young company is debunking the myth of the opera diva, and making an environmental statement along the way.
The Bicycle Opera Project invades Hamilton, Ont. The young company is debunking the myth of the opera diva, and making an environmental statement along the way. (Deana Sumanac/CBC)

It's tough to imagine an opera singer wiping off sweat and bicycle grease before walking on stage, but a new company is all about defying the opera clich├ęs.
Members of the Bicycle Opera Project are bringing the classical art form to cities across Ontario, by bicycle.
The freewheeling gang has only one rule: no divas allowed.

Three years ago, Toronto-based Koniuk, a soprano, was about to start her professional career as an opera singer. But she wanted to do something different than what the conventional wisdom prescribes for young singers: small roles in big productions. "You have to be OK with cycling through the rain, for example," says the company's co-founder Larissa Koniuk during the company's stop in Hamilton last week. "You have to be OK with changing a flat tire."
The environmentalist in her was also unimpressed.

A touring opera without the footprint

Big touring operas, like many other elaborate entertainment productions, require trucks loaded with props and costumes that log many miles on the road. So Koniuk, a cyclist, realized her favourite hobby could also become a new way opera singers could travel between gigs without harming the environment.
Larissa Koniuk
'You have to be OK with cycling through the rain' says the company's co-founder Larissa Koniuk (CBC)
With a few like-minded singers and musicians joining, the Bicycle Opera Project hit the road.
"I'll admit that the project is quite ambitious," saysKoniuk. "We require that our singers and instrumentalists not only cycle up to 80 km in a day, but also that we perform a fantastic show."
It wasn't easy.  






[ Read more on cbc.ca ]

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