Pittsburgh Opera To Unveil New Mobile App Functionality During Performances Of ‘La Bohème’

By Nicole Kuchta

Pittsburgh Opera will introduce a new functionality in the company’s mobile app during upcoming performances of Puccini’s “La Bohème” on Mar. 30 – Apr. 7, 2019 at the Benedum Center.

The free mobile app, powered by InstantEncore, was launched back in 2016 in order to “provide patrons with easy access to information about the company’s productions, artists, and events,” according to the press release.

The new functionality will allow patrons to “receive exclusive visual and audio content through their smartphone in real time . . . including during the performance.” Operagoers can listen to interviews, uncover the work’s musical themes and motifs, get historical context for specific scenes, enjoy interesting trivia, and listen to supplemental audio commentary.

The app has been designed to heighten the experience of all audience members. So, in order to minimize the potential for distraction, the audio component requires the use of headphones, and the visual content is set to a dark, dim background.

General Director Christopher Hahn is excited to provide Pittsburgh audiences with this new tool, which may facilitate the process of acquiring knowledge of and developing an appreciation for opera: “We are always looking for new ways to enhance the audience experience. We know people bring their smartphones with them everywhere, including to the theater, so we are embracing them. This is an innovative way to apply modern technology to a centuries-old art form.”