It was 19.5 years ago that I saw my first opera and I fell in love.  I was a recent University graduate doing a work exchange (through AISEC) in Hungary.  Our group of international students were open to taking in all sorts of culture. And in 1991 Hungary, culture was a very cheap thing to do.   I was a bit nervous  about the opera because we had seen a Hungarian production of Cats the week before and it was awful (they hadn't bothered to translate all the music into hungarian so the same songs were performed several times).  But I was promised wine and chocolate after the show.  And it was only about $15 or $20 to go.    So I went.   And I fell in LOVE.  I saw 3 more operas in the next 2 months - The Barber of Saville, Madame Butterfly and some awful English one whose name I have long forgotten.    

What do I love about opera?

  1. The sumptuous costumes
  2. The talented opera singers and emotion filled music
  3. The heaving bosom romance
  4. The drama
  5. The lack of size 0 anything
  6. The fashion
  7. All of the above

My current life, with a very active pre-school son, doesn't allow for a lot of nights out.   So when my girlfriend Gwen Floyd invited me to Vancouver Opera Blogger Night I jumped at the chance. 

I had not seen La Traviata and it is now easily one of my top  favourite operas after Madame Butterfly and Barber of Seville.   It has all the things I love about opera - music that makes me want to sing/hum along, singing that makes me forget to look at the subtitles, a tear jerker love story (didn't even make it through the first act),  fabulous costumes and crowd scenes that inject that little bit of humour.  

Because I was Gwen's guest I was included on the back stage tour and for the post back stage reception.  I've put some pix on my flickr page of the backstage tour and our fellow bloggers. 

There was also some great fashion at the opera, on both the men and the women.  Of course, this is Vancouver so there were also some folks who dressed down. But I'm happy to report I saw no Lululemons and no fleece (although a sweater vest and jeans did make me shake my head).   I did though see these ladies who all looked fantastic and showed their own individual style.  And thanks to Gwen for pushing me to go over and ask for their photo.  Click photo for more info.

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And I know I have not yet answered the question about what I wore.  I wore my new kimono top from Dahlia Drive, a black pencil skirt and animal print Nine West heels.    The only picture I captured was me backstage in the "carnival house of mirrors" mirror wall (just think about 15 minutes after I stood on that spot it was full of talent opera singers).  Gwen thinks she has a good one.  So I'll post one if I get one. 
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Tickets are still available for La Traviata.  It plays until May 12th and tickets start at $23.  And having recently seen (and posted about) an opera from the back row I can honestly say there are no bad seats at the QE Theatre.  So if you enjoy opera be sure to grab your tickets now.

Update - a picture from Gwen of my outfit.   It is one of those I'm trying to look casual and away from the camera pictures.  Oh and the evening finished with me exploding mini cream puff onto my top.  Nothing says time to go home better than cream on your shirt.

Note - Sorry about using flickr to post my photos this time.  Will be back to regular photo posting methods shortly.