For the best browsing experience, please download a modern browser. Internet Explorer 8 is outdated and may result in errors.

Seattle Opera.

Opera Talks

Deepen Your Knowledge

Although we’ve had to cancel our in-person events, we are recording talks and making past presentations available to share with audiences. From composer spotlights to a two-part conversation with General Director Christina Scheppelmann to chats about opera genres, dramaturg Jonathan Dean and special guest speakers are covering a variety of topics.

If you are enjoying our digital opera offerings, please make a donation to support the artists and staff that are collaborating to bring you opera in new ways.

Give Now


For our latest Opera Talk, dramaturg Jonathan Dean retraces the fascinating life of the man who wrote the words to three of Mozart’s greatest operas: The Marriage of FigaroCosì fan tutte, and Don Giovanni. During his whirlwind lifetime, Lorenzo Da Ponte met—and emulated—Casanova in Venice, wrote librettos for Mozart, Salieri, and other great composers in Vienna, ran an opera company in London, became the first professor of Italian at Columbia University, and founded America’s first opera house. Please note that this video was originally intended to air prior to the rebroadcast of our 2006 production of Mozart’s Così fan tutte. This talk premiered Tuesday, August 4, 2020. 



Full Playlist

To see the full playlist and jump to your favorite, click or tap the icon in the top right corner of the video.

  • Lorenzo Da Ponte
  • Composer Spotlight on Verdi
  • American Operas
  • Composer Spotlight on Mozart
  • Opera Indulges in the Seven Deadly Sins
  • Motifs, from Mozart to the Movies
  • Composer Spotlight on Mascagni
  • The History of Seattle's Opera House
  • Composer Spotlight on Puccini
  • Getting to Know our General Director (parts 1 & 2)
  • A Bird’s-Eye View: Telling the Story of Charlie Parker through Opera

Last updated June 12, 2020.