The Detroit Passion for Performance - Detroit Opera

The Detroit Passion for Performance

Guest Post by Isabella Crispino, Detroit City Football Club Marketing Manager and first time opera goer

As I enter my eighth year in professional sports, my eye has sharpened its skill to find beauty in all types of performances.  Whether the smoke of Keyworth filling the air after a goal or the echoing applause erupting after an aria in the Detroit Opera House, we are all fascinated by pure passion and talent. In October of 2023, some players from the Men’s Detroit City Football Club (DCFC) as well as some staff, including myself, attended a rehearsal of Detroit Opera's Madame Butterfly.

Players of the Detroit City Football Club enter the Detroit Opera House Lobby Credit: Kyle Clayton, Detroit City Football Club Players of the Detroit City Football Club enter the Detroit Opera House Lobby
Credit: Kyle Clayton, Detroit City Football Club

Although I'm a theater kid at heart and have been to many plays and musicals, I never had the opportunity to attend an opera, much less at the Detroit Opera House. The solid white exterior does little to prepare for the magnitude of beauty that strikes upon entering. I constantly caught myself and the player's jaws open, admiring every architectural detail of the Grand Hall's Rouge, Gold, and Verdigris colors. As Detroit Opera’s Director of New Media and Special Projects, Matthew Principe walked us through each area, explaining the history of the stunning building, I found myself increasingly excited to experience the performance in the converted Movie Hall.

Madame Butterfly was an absolute pleasure to enjoy.  "I recommend it; you never know what's going to come next," DCFC defender Rhys Williams said.  Every scene transported you to a different world.  The use of VR and augmented reality within the show was “mind blowing,” as Connor Rutz, Midfielder, stated.  The set design was inventive and intuitive, especially in transitioning from the “reality” to the “fantasy” within the show.  From the exceptionally thoughtful costume design to the authentic details in the bridal ceremony, stage director Matthew Owaza created moments of vivid Japanese cultural traditions.

Players of the Detroit City Football Club enter the Detroit Opera House Auditorium
Credit: Kyle Clayton, Detroit City Football Club

As we sat admiring the opera, my mind couldn't help but make connections to the “performances” we stage at Keyworth Stadium all season long. It takes more than the players to create an unforgettable night.   Without the unsung heroes behind the curtains (or off the turf!) there would be no set, show, or audience.

Forward Skage Simonsen dribbles the ball Credit: Kyle Clayton, Detroit City Football Club

Forward Skage Simonsen dribbles the ball
Credit: Kyle Clayton, Detroit City Football Club

Opera and sports have so much in common. Watching skilled performers is mesmerizing.  The settings become other-worldly, and the environment brings the audience together to support the story unfolding before us.  Like many players on our team, I have been fortunate to experience art and sports internationally and in Detroit.  Through bursting from my seat in applause as lights fade in the Detroit Opera House, watching Miggy's last hit at Comerica, nail-biting as the Lions make history, and chanting with the crowds at Keyworth as DCFC breaks ground in the USL, there is no scarcity of passion and talent in the City of Detroit.


 

Share with friends:

View All

News/Blog

Janáček, Nationalism, and Nature

In The Cunning Little Vixen, premiered in 1924, Janáček toes the line between realism and fantasy…

Read More
Detroit Opera Announces the 2024-25 Resident Artists

After an international search, Detroit Opera has announced the five singers who will train in Detroit Opera’s Resident Artist Program during the 2024–25 season…

Read More
What is (a) Happening?: Black Mountain College

John Cage came to Black Mountain College in April 1948. He, along with his partner and collaborative choreographer Merce Cunningham, was en route to the West Coast….

Read More
Cage’s Legacy in Detroit: Techno, Free Jazz, Punk

“Where does beauty begin and where does it end?
Where it ends is where the artist begins.” – John Cage

Read More