Opera and postmodernity: Glass and Adams

09 Mar 23 - 30 Mar 23


Imparted by Carmen Noheda

Opera is capable of making contemporaneity creative. It is not surprising that the genre finds appeal in the power of images, the media or even the political space. John Adams managed to revive history live with Nixon in China when, in prime time, the eyes and ears of the world attended the first meeting between China and the United States after a quarter of a century of total estrangement. For once, the cultural spotlight was not on King Lear, Ulysses or Orpheus, but on a historical and media event transformed into an opera, an opera designed for the public in the age of mass communication. 

About the course

"The week that changed the world" will offer us the opportunity to look at the creation of an opera in postmodernity, one of the most discussed terms in post-war criticism. The course sessions propose different perspectives on the scenic renovation of the late 20th century to investigate the impulse of currents such as musical minimalism, intertextuality, the fascination and appropriation of images, and their ability to mediate the course of history and reverse reality and its representation. The artistic claim to wander freely through time, space, history, culture or metaphor will allow us to understand the opera repertoire of composers such as John Adams and Philip Glass, protagonists of two highly anticipated premieres in Spain: Nixon in China and Orphéé, whose keys will help us enjoy contemporary opera in the current season of the Teatro Real.  

About the professor

Carmen Noheda is a Margarita Salas postdoctoral researcher at the Center for Research in Opera and Music Theater (University of Sussex) and the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona. In 2021, she defended her doctoral thesis on opera creation at the Teatro Real (UCM), obtaining the extraordinary doctoral award. In addition, she has a degree in history and music sciences (UCM) and a higher degree in clarinet (RCSMM), both end-of-degree awards. Between 2015 and 2019, she enjoyed the pre-doctoral contract of University Teacher Training (UCM) and carried out research at Seoul National University (2016-2017), University of California Los Angeles (2018) and Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro (2019). Recently, she has worked in the musical archive of the composer Luis de Pablo (ICCMU-SGAE, 2021) and regularly collaborates in outreach activities with the OCNE, ORCAM, CNDM, OEX, Ópera Joven de la Diputación de Badajoz, Fundación SGAE or Radio clásica at RNE. Her line of research focuses on contemporary Spanish opera.  

When and where?

9th, 16th, 23rd and 30th of March, from 19:00 pm to 21:00 pm  

Parallel activities room of Teatro Real  

Practical Information

Prices: 175€ General Public / 150€ season ticket holders / 140€ Amigos del Real; 125€ young people up to 35 / 110€ Amigo Joven and Plus (*)  

*Note: please take the summary receipt of your purchase with you when you go to the Teatro Real. You will obtain it once your purchase is complete or from your customer account.   

At the end of the course, a diploma will be awarded.  

Further information:

Cancellation and return of registration policy  



20 Jun


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