The Dallas Opera

Like music and making your way to Dallas? If so, you’ll definitely want to check out the Dallas Opera House, specially designed for world class performances of opera and musicals.

But don’t jump to the conclusion that only stuffy or inaccessible opera performances are all you’ll find there. Ballet as well as premieres of innovative new musicals and debuts of modern opera pieces can all be found at the Opera House – depending on the night and schedule.

Prepare to be pleasantly surprised and take a chance on a “new-fashioned” Opera House, not the staid settings that you may associate with these types of musical performances.

Winspear Opera House

You don’t even have to worry about listening to operas performed in their original languages. Yes, they sometimes are sung in other languages but translations are projected right above the stage. This means you’ll always be able to understand the plot, major events, etc. Regular visitors love this feature!

The Opera House seats up to 2200 people and has state of the art retractable screens as well as excellent acoustics. Joan Sutherland, Placido Domingo and Jon Vickers have been huge draws here.

Winspear Opera House

In addition to classic pieces, new adaptations have included a recreation of Moby Dick, based on Herman Melville’s classic book set to music. Because of this willingness to take opera and musicals to a whole new level, the Opera House has been a major attraction for more than half a century. There are performances for nearly everyone, from children to adults.

If you associate opera with formal clothing, you’ll be surprised that the dress code is far more relaxed than you might expect. Business attire is fine and a fair number of people wear jeans, mingling with those in evening gowns.

People do tend to dress up on opening nights and Saturday evenings while matinees and weekly performances are far more casual. In short, wear what you like. You won’t get asked to leave if you decide formal clothing isn’t for you.

If you want to fit performance of the Dallas Opera into your schedule, a visit to the eastern end of the Arts District in downtown Dallas would be an ideal way to spend your time beforehand. The District is conveniently near the Opera House, as is the Meyerson Symphony Center.

However, be sure to go to the Opera House first, since some performances can last for the better part of the day or evening. You won’t want to have to short yourself on time when strolling through the Arts District or visiting the Symphony Center.

There is only one major rule you need to follow when attending an opera performance. You can dress in casual clothing but don’t have a relaxed attitude when it comes to arrival time. Get there late and you’ll have to watch the opera or other musical performances on a closed-circuit television in the lobby. There are no exceptions to this rule – so plan accordingly!

You may also want to try and eat before entering the Opera House. Drinks are available at intermission but not full course dinners. Restaurants located near the Opera House include The Capital Grille, winner of the American Culinary Federation’s Achievement of Excellence Award.

Other fine dining establishments in the area include Jorges Tex-Mex and the Salum Restaurant. To make your dining experience segue with opera performances, restaurants frequently offer special meals to accommodate your schedule. Be sure to ask about those particular menu items.

Don’t want to go through the bother of driving? Then by all means take the DART light rail system, getting off at the Pearl Street exit. You’ll be within blocks of the Opera House.

If opera and symphony performances will be your prime reason for visiting Dallas, consider staying at the Rosewood Crescent Hotel. You may find special rates by noting you are planning to attend operas.

This hotel has won major awards for being among the best hotels in America. It has a European feeling and New American cuisine. The hotel is the perfect abode for relaxing before or after an opera performance.

Ticket prices may vary for individual performances so do call ahead. Student discounts are available at a cost of $25 per seat. However, there are a limited number of these available. Call (214) 443-1000 if you want an opportunity to take advantage of student tickets. The Dallas Opera House is located at 2403 Flora Street, Suite 500 and can be reached at (214) 443-1000.