Operas to live vicariously through

Although times are a little uncertain at the moment and many of us are navigating the changes to our daily life, one thing that never fails to cheer us up is music.

We’ve compiled a list of our favourite operas to live vicariously through while we’re experiencing life in lock down. If you’re a frequent opera goer then recreate the magic in your home by listening to some of the most famous opera songs and enjoy some good old fashioned escapism. If you’re new to the genre but are looking for different types of things to do at home then embracing these operas are a great place to start!

If you’re missing a sense of adventure at the moment, then Mozart’s masterpiece, The Magic Flute, is the opera for you.

Follow Tamino’s journey through a strange and distant land and the trials he must complete to rescue the princess Pamina and prove himself worthy of being a leader.

With The Queen of the Night’s instantly recognisable aria and Mozart’s infamous legacy this is one of the best operas for beginners ! And with a story about magical instruments, what music lover wouldn’t enjoy living vicariously through this opera?

Verdi's Falstaff

Verdi's Falstaff

Falstaff in the Laundry Basket – Henry Fuseli

It’s a sad time for Brits when they can’t get to the pub, so if you’re missing a pint or two with friends then grab a cold one from the fridge and give Verdi’s Falstaff a listen.

Adapted from Shakespeare’s The Merry Wives of Windsor, Falstaff’s drunken japes will keep you entertained, as he plots to seduce the wives of two rich men to access their wealth. Unfortunately for Falstaff they are one step ahead and are prepared to prank him in revenge.

This opera is priceless, even just for the visual of John Falstaff being thrown into the Thames in a laundry basket. We’ve all been there at some point!

If you’re currently feeling like you want to run away with the fairies then Iolanthe is the opera for you.

So you MIGHT have had enough of politicians, but Gilbert and Sullivan’s parody of braying peers is certainly a bit of light relief.

As she returns from her 25 year banishment for marrying a mortal, fairy Iolanthe learns that her half-fairy half-human son has fallen in love. Unfortunately for him his beloved is also sought-after by the Lords of Westminster, leading to a showdown between the peers and the fairies, giving the opera its alternate title: The Peer and the Peri.

Rossini's The Barber of Seville

Rossini's The Barber of Seville

With flights cancelled left, right and centre lots of people are missing holidays, and I’m sure many of us could certainly use one.

If this sounds like you, transport yourself to sunny Spain with The Barber of Seville. Regarded as one of the best opera buffs, it provides some well needed comic relief in these strange times.

In Rossini’s farcical favourite, Figaro, a barber, assists Count Almaviva in prising the beautiful Rosina away from her lecherous guardian, Dr Bartolo.

With melodies so vibrant you can almost smell the orange trees, this opera will keep your spirits lifted – and if one opera isn’t enough, the story continues in Mozart’s The Marriage of Figaro!