Opera in St. Louis
Opera is defined as "drama set to music." However, it isn't usually considered opera unless most, if not the entire play is sung.
- The Opera Theatre of St. Louis produces an annual summer festival of opera performed in English, originally co-founded by Richard Gaddes in 1968; he is now the director of the Santa Fe Opera.
- Union Avenue Opera Theatre, formed in the early 1990s, is a smaller but thriving company that performs opera in the original languages.
- The Muny in Forest Park, an outdoor theater, was established in 1917 by the St. Louis Grand Opera Committee. The first performance was the opera Aida[] It is often referred to as the St. Louis MUNY Opera. However, today, mostly musical theater is performed at this venue. The primary difference being that while musical theater contains musical production numbers, the spoken portions are significant. That said, in 2007, Les Miserables will be peformed at The Muny, marking the first time the musical has been performed in the US at an outdoor theater. While many in the audience may not realize it, it does meet the requirements for an opera.[]