Indie Opera Toronto Begins Its 2017 Festival

By Francisco Salazar

Everyone says opera has no audience or that it simply cannot sustain itself in a culture that quickly rejects classical music for quicker hits. However, in Toronto, the indie opera scene continues to thrive today with 11 companies having formed part of Indie Opera Toronto.

After having much success in 2011 with “La Bohème” on Tranzac Club on Brunswick Ave, the Against the Grain Theatre and 11 companies formed an alliance to perform opera in multiple venues and have reached much success. This season, after six years, the company will reprise “La Bohème” and the alliance will be showcasing numerous works until July 8.

The other companies that have joined the alliance include:

Bicycle Opera Project

The company tours across Ontario and Eastern Canada on bikes.

Essential Opera

The company presents operas in concert, keeping production costs down.

FAWN Chamber Creative

Its main focus is commissioning and presenting new Canadian chamber music and opera, incorporating the work of artists from other fields.

Loose TEA Music Theatre

The female-led company takes new views of classics and integrates multimedia with its opera.


It fosters young artists in all fields related to opera to help create the opera artists and audiences of tomorrow.

Opera 5

It explores both classic and newer operas, featuring young talent. It’s known for its “Opera Cheats” videos.

Urbanvessel Opera

It creates experimental music and theater through interdisciplinary collaboration.


It describes its opera as “audience-centred,” featuring performances that help people “test out the waters” of opera.


It commissions and presents operas that build bridges between historic and contemporary versions of the art form.

All the companies are scheduled to perform this summer until June 2 with more information at the Indie Opera Toronto website.