Atlanta Opera

Atlanta Opera costume shop employees begin making masks for healthcare workers.
The Atlanta Opera

Performances may have been canceled, but the Atlanta arts community isn’t sitting idly at home during the pandemic. 


The Atlanta Opera and the Alliance Theatre have both started using their unique resources and talents to make face masks for local healthcare workers fighting the coronavirus. 

Karli Cadel

While not many operas were written in English, George Gershwin's Porgy and Bess is one of the most celebrated — and perhaps the most controversial. 

Although the production provided roles for African American performers during a time when minstrelsy was still prevalent, criticism of the opera's representation of black culture, life and dialect have followed Gershwin's piece, from 1935, for decades.

Jeff Roffman

"A psychological thriller draped in lust, incest, power and seduction."

That's the Atlanta Opera blurb for the company's new production of Salome, which runs Jan. 25 to Feb. 2. 

Set in King Herod's palace and culminating in a teenaged girl's kissing a severed head, the opera shocked when it was new. Even now it comes on strong. And it's not trivial to mount.

Music director Arthur Fagen sat down with GPB's Sarah Zaslaw to dish about the challenges of Richard Strauss's most scandalous opera.

Tom Grosscup

The Atlanta Opera's production of "Dead Man Walking" tells the story of Sister Helen Prejean and her relationship with death row inmate Joseph de Rocher. It's based on Prejean's real-life book chronicling her prison ministry. Prejean wrote about her experiences as a spriritual counselor to death row inmates Elmo Patrick Sonnier and Robert Lee Willie in the book, which the production amalgamates into de Rocher's character.

GPB's Sarah Zaslaw spoke to Tomer Zvulun, the Atlanta Opera's artistic director, and Georgia native Jamie Barton, who plays Sister Helen in the production. They discussed ideas of justice, forgiveness and how the opera wrestles with the dignity of victims and perpetrators of violence.

Tom Grosscup

For decades, Sister Helen Prejean has been a prominent opponent of the death penalty. She started her prison ministry in the 1980s, serving as a spiritual advisor to those on death row. She chronicled her experiences in the 1993 book, "Dead Man Walking." It was adapted into an Oscar-winning movie, a play and an opera.

The Atlanta Opera performs "Dead Man Walking" starting Feb. 2. It tells the story of Prejean and her relationship with death row inmate Joseph De Rocher. Prejean stopped by "On Second Thought" to discuss her ministry, the opera and the power of radical empathy.

Tim Wilkerson

Mozart’s Magic Flute is a great first opera for children. In additional to magical instruments, it’s got a prince on a rescue mission, a funny but lonely birdcatcher, a high-strung Queen of the Night, wild animals and trials by water and fire.

Is World Peace Possible?

Nov 2, 2016
Atlanta Opera

During World War I on Christmas Day, French, British and German soldiers laid down their arms, and climbed out of the trenches to exchange holiday greetings. It’s known as the Christmas Truce, and we learn more about it from Emory University professor Patrick Allitt.