The Teatro Real meeting place and world epicentre for opera

El Teatro Real, centro mundial de la ópera
El Teatro Real, centro mundial de la ópera

The Teatro Real hosts the first WORLD OPERA FORUM, April 12 to 15, coinciding with the premiere of its new production of Gloriana, by Benjamin Britten

  •  For the first time, the three international associations of theatres and lyrical festivals come together ─Opera Europa, Opera America y Ópera Latinoamérica─ along with representatives from Africa, Asia and Oceania.
  • The conference will focus on 4 central topics: Opera as Cultural Heritage, New Operas, Opera and Cultural Diversity in the 21st Century, and Sponsorship for Opera.
  • The discussion platforms will be closed to the public and take place simultaneously throughout the Teatro Real. Registration for professionals is open until March 15.
  • The opening session of the World Opera Forum, on April 12, coincides with the premiere in Madrid of the opera Gloriana, by Benjamin Britten, a new production from the Teatro Real, co-produced with the English National Opera and the Vlaamse Opera (Flemish Opera) of Belgium.
  • The World Opera Forum, organized by the Teatro Real in conjunction with OPERA EUROPA, has the support of the Central Government of Spain ─ via the Agencia Española de Cooperación Internacional para el Desarrollo (AECID) and Acción Cultural Española (AC/E)─, along with the Regional Government of Madrid, the City Hall of Madrid, and private sponsors.

Between April 12 and 15, the Teatro Real will become the world centre for opera as it hosts the first World Opera Forum, an international conference of opera experts which will bring together the associations of Opera Europa, Opera America and Ópera Latinoamérica (OLA), along with representatives from Africa, Asia and Oceania.
The Teatro Real was the motivator for the Primer Encuentro de Teatros Iberoamericanos en Madrid in May 2015, and this took place at the same time as the Conferencia Internacional de Opera Europa─ with the participation of 300 professionals from 38 countries─. Now it reaffirms its commitment in convening this international conference of theatres and lyrical festivals, drawing on the strategic role it plays between Europe and America.
On this occasion, the World Opera Forum looks ahead in time as it debates the future of opera in an ever more globalized world.
There will be four principal themes to examine where opera may be headed in the years to come, these will be the basis of discussion amongst the participating groups:
  • Cultural Heritage (coinciding with the European Year of Cultural Heritage 2018)
    ─ Will the weight of its conventions kill opera?
  • New operas
    ─ Can new works find their place into the heart of opera tradition, as in theatre or cinema?
  • Diversity
    ─ How can opera find meaning for an ever more diverse audience and reflect 21st century society?
  • Sponsorship
  • ─ How can we develop our capacity to advocate opera in the context of our democracies? 
Each topic will be introduced by a series of short presentations (272 words each), “provocations” to encourage discussion amongst a group of 12 delegates moderated by an expert. The delegates will represent different areas of opera ─managers, ­­composers, stage directors, artistic directors, interpreters etc.
In this way, the various approaches to each topic will be seen from very different perspectives which will make for a wide range of conclusions.
The realization of a truly global world forum, capable of channeling common projects and issues which affect the world of opera throughout the planet has been an ambition shared by many of the members of Opera Europa and Opera America. Last September, during the conference to conmerate the 10th anniversary of Ópera Latinoamérica(OLA) in Bogotá, Nicholas Payne, Director of OPERA EUROPA, Marc Scorca, President of OPERA AMERICA and Ignacio García-Belenguer, CEO of the Teatro Real, presented their proposal to hold the first edition of the World Opera Forum in Madrid, coinciding with the celebrations of the Bicentenario del Teatro Real.
The Central Government of Spain - via the Agencia Española de Cooperación Internacional para el Desarrollo (AECID) and Acción Cultural Española (AC/E)─, the Regional Government of Madrid and the City Hall of Madrid, along with private sponsors are supporting this world forum that will bring influential people from cultural venues and international artists to the capital of Spain. For three days, the delegates will share their experiences, ideas and concerns, as well as attending the premiere of the new production of Gloriana by Benjamin Britten, eagerly waited this season at the Teatro Real.
As organizer and host of the first edition of the World Opera Forum, the Teatro Real actively contributes to the dissemination of opera as a living art form; multidisciplinary, global and accessible, and one which has a profound capacity to stir and transform emotions.