Central City Opera Festival
The picturesque resort of Central City, situated high in Colorado's Rocky Mountains, has established itself as a world-class summer opera fixture in America's cultural calendar, attracting high-calibre operatic talent.
Central City was a gold rush boom town in the 19th century; at its peak 40,000 miners, who had made the journey from Wales and Cornwall, were crammed into 'The Richest Square Mile on Earth'. With wealth came cultural aspirations. When it was decided to build an opera house, it took just three days to raise the requisite sum, and a prominent architect from Denver, Robert S Roeschlaub, took on the commission.
The new theatre opened on Eureka Street in 1898. But within 20 years Central City's prominence as a Gold Rush town had dwindled and the prospectors had moved on. The Opera House fell into disrepair until 1931, when the Central City Opera House Association was founded and began an ongoing campaign of renovations, repairs and maintenance. For six weeks every summer Central City presents three or four operas, a mix of old chestnuts and lesser-known shows, often including an American work. Performers are often both seasoned professionals and young-artists, and it’s success has meant that in 2012 the Opera Festival celebrated its 80th anniversary.
The 2013 shows include The Marriage of Figaro (Jun 28-Jul 26), Dead Man Walking (Jul 5-25), Trouble in Tahiti (Jul 20-23 August) (sold out) and The Sound of Music (Aug 2-10). Short works and other events including Lunch & A Song, Opera Notes (free) and Central City Days (an afternoon adventure and picnic in the picturesque Central City Cemetery to hear the tales of the county’s most infamous and notorious characters, ending with a staged gunfight)
Step into the footsteps of Colorado pioneers and prospectors, and enjoy world class opera in a unique historic setting. Please visit the website www.centralcityopera.org/ for more information.