Seattle Opera presents entertaining and insightful previews and lectures about the operas they produce every season. Get an inside look as you discover the beauty of opera or deepen your personal connection to the enjoyment of the opera.
There are many ways to enjoy opera for free in Seatte: Live broadcasts from the Seattle Opera stage of McCaw Hall, community opera previews, and seasonal opera lectures are free and everyone is welcome. In addition, there are ways to attend live opera for as little as $15. Details of these opportunities are listed below.
About Seattle Opera
Since 1963, Seattle Opera has built a reputation as a leading opera company, recognized in the United States as well as around the world. Seattle Opera is especially known for its acclaimed works of Richard Wagner’s epic Ring.
The company is committed to advancing the cultural life in the Pacific Northwest with opera productions of the highest caliber, and through innovative education and community programs that take opera far beyond the McCaw Hall stage at Seattle Center.
Each year, more than 95,000 people attend Seattle Opera performances and programs designed for people of all ages.
2017/2018 Seattle Opera season
Madame Butterfly. Aug. 5-19, 2017. Puccini’s beloved classic tells the story of a whirlwind affair (and its tragic aftermath) between a reckless American naval officer and a trusting Japanese maiden.
The Barber of Seville. Oct. 14-28, 2017. Young love conquers all in Rossini’s colorful, hilarious comedy full of harebrained schemes and unforgettable music.
Così fan tutte. Jan. 13-27, 2018. Mozart’s passionate music tells a timeless tale of love, lust, and loyalty in this quirky comedy of (bad) manners.
Beatrice & Benedict. Feb. 24-Mar. 10, 2018. This new operatic adaptation of Shakespeare’s “Much Ado about Nothing” features the Bard’s own text – in English – set to Berlioz’s beautiful music.
Aida. May 5-19, 2018. Set in Egypt, Verdi’s epic masterpiece features a high-stakes love triangle between two rival princesses and a conflicted military commander.
Seattle Opera Free Community Previews
Opera previews feature professional singers and an accompanist in an hour long presentation that takes the audience on a journey through the story and music of the upcoming Seattle Opera production. Free admission. Registration is not required.
AIDA PREVIEWS Around Puget Sound April 14 – May 3, 2018
Need a quick introduction to our upcoming production of Aida? Want to learn the basics of opera? Join Seattle Opera at your local library or community center for a 80-90-minute presentation that takes the audience on a journey through the story and music of the upcoming mainstage opera.
Please note: Starting on Feb. 1, we will be discontinuing community previews at specific locations due to lack of funding. The affected locations are: Ballard Library, Bothell Library, Frye Art Museum, Jefferson County Library, Judson Park, Kenyon Hall, Rainier Arts Center, and Seattle Central Library.
- Saturday, April 14, 2018 2:00 PM Federal Way Library
- Sunday, April 15, 2018 2:00 PM Green Lake Library
- Monday, April 16, 2018 7:00 PM Kirkland Library
- Tuesday, April 17, 2018 7:00 PM Milton-Edgewood Library
- Wednesday, April 18, 2018 7:00 PM Burien Library
- Saturday, April 21, 2018 1:00 PM Kingston Library
- Sunday, April 22, 2018 2:00 PM West Seattle Library
- Monday, April 23, 2018 7:00 PM Bellevue Library
- Thursday, April 26, 2018 7:00 PM Mercer Island Library
- Saturday, April 28, 2018 7:00 PM Bainbridge Island Library
- Sunday, April 29, 2018 2:00 PM Vashon Island Library
- Tuesday, May 1, 2018 7:00 PM Issaquah Library
- Wednesday, May 2, 2018 7:00 PM Shoreline Library
- Thursday, May 3, 2018 10:30 PM Newport Way Library
For more information about previews, visit the upcoming preview schedule.
For more information about current or upcoming Seattle Opera productions, visit: https://www.seattleopera.org/on-stage/
Seattle Opera Free Lecture Series at Seattle University
The Seattle Opera free lectures are interactive multi-media experiences, designed to make you think about opera in new and innovative ways. These fun and informative lectures have something to offer the opera novice and the opera aficionado alike. Past lectures have covered topics ranging from cultural and historical context surrounding opera, to the exploration of current events through an operatic lens. The free lectures are presented monthly during the Seattle Opera season. Upcoming Seattle Opera Free Lecture Dates are listed below.
Admission is free, but RSVP Recommended.
- Tuesday, September 26, 2017 7:00 PM Pigott Auditorium – Seattle University
- Tuesday, October 24, 2017 7:00 PM Pigott Auditorium – Seattle University
- Tuesday, November 21, 2017 7:00 PM Pigott Auditorium – Seattle University
- Tuesday, January 23, 2018 7:00 PM Pigott Auditorium – Seattle University
- Tuesday, February 27, 2018 7:00 PM Pigott Auditorium – Seattle University
- Tuesday, March 27, 2018 7:00 PM Pigott Auditorium – Seattle University
- Tuesday, April 24, 2018 7:00 PM Pigott Auditorium – Seattle University
- Wednesday, May 23, 2018 7:00 PM Pigott Auditorium – Seattle University
Free live broadcasts of Seattle Opera productions
Want to experience the splendor of opera on the go? Tune into 98.1 KING FM selected nights during the season for live broadcasts from the Seattle Opera stage of McCaw Hall. A Seattle Opera curator leads you through this marvelous listening journey. Upcoming Seattle Opera LIVE broadcasts from McCaw Hall:
- October 21, 2017: The Barber of Seville
- January 20, 2018: Così fan tutte
- March 3, 2018: Beatrice & Benedict
- May 12, 2018: Aida
How to get cheap tickets to Seattle Opera
$25 tickets are available in the Second Tier Side Upper for every Seattle Opera performance at McCaw Hall, unless otherwise specified. The $25 tickets sell out quickly, so purchase them as far in advance as possible.
$15 Standing Room Only (SRO) tickets are also available for all performances at McCaw Hall. Standing room is in the back of the Orchestra, and you do, literally, stand throughout the performance (you cannot sit in any unoccupied seats, but there is a padded rail to lean against). Also be aware that the English translations are not visible from the SRO location and that availability is extremely limited. Purchase SRO tickets by phone or in person on the day of show at the Seattle Opera office (1020 John Street): for weekday performances at 9:00 a.m. and for weekend performances at noon on the day of the opera.