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Co-creating Opera: What for? An online talk with community artist & writer François Matarasso
We are thrilled that Community artist and writer François Matarasso – author of A Restless Art, How participation won, and why it matters - will join us at People Dancing in the Summer on Tuesday 26 July, 17:30 for an online talk about art and people and the purpose of bringing them together.

Tuesday 26 July 2022, 17:30 - 19:00
Online, via Zoom
Free for People Dancing members - £15 for non-members
Booking essential

Co-creating Opera: What for?

François says: "At the start of 2020, I began work on a three year project to co-create new operas in Barcelona, Portugal and Ireland. I’d been invited to join a consortium of producers, universities and research institutes funded by the EU Horizon programme. The aim was to research how digital technology could open this elite artform to people at risk of social exclusion. My knowledge of opera and software was below amateur, but I do know about community art, and that’s what I was there for.

Six weeks after our first partnership meeting, we were in lockdown. For the next 18 months, restrictions came and went in our different countries. Digital technology was no longer an innovation—it was a lifeline. Slowly, work happened. Art emerged, crystalised and grew. It became real. Then it became exciting. In June 2022, the first opera was performed by young prisoners in Lisbon. In August, Irish National Opera will present the world’s first co-created VR opera at Kilkenny Arts Festival. In October, hundreds of people from Raval will open the 175th anniversary season of the Liceu Opera House in Barcelona.

There were times I wondered if I’d get here, and even where ‘here’ was. After 40 years of community art, I still had much to learn, about opera and technology, of course, but more importantly about art and people and the purpose of bringing them together. This talk will share some of those lessons in a personal overview of the Traction project."

Free to attend for People Dancing Members - tickets available to purchase for non-members.

Bookings for this event are now closed