A Night at the Opera

The latest ploy to get people to enjoy opera? Booze. As the local group Opera on Tap has shown, opera can sound better in a bar — especially if you’re young, drinking beer, and not overwhelmed by an auditorium filled with bejeweled folks in suits and gowns. And not only is the nine-month-old Cabaret Otaku following in the footsteps of Opera on Tap, but it’s also channeling arts supporters from the classical age. “Back then, all of the great musicians performed in salons and pubs — all these incredibly top-notch musicians would bust out their music just for the pure joy of it,” says Otaku’s Christina Marzano Haystead. “And honestly, I want to perform in a place where I can show my tattoos.”

The laid-back ensemble, which doesn’t “adhere to the idea that classical events have to be expensive and stuffy,” she says, was all set to perform Mozart’s Così fan Tutte sitcom style, over three nights this weekend at the Mercury Cafe. But then one member had to bail out at the last minute, and because the show must go on, Haystead explains that the group will instead present Fighting Fire With Opera, a program of highly professional singing that will benefit wildfire relief efforts in Colorado. No opera glasses or airs required.

Catch Fighting Fire With Opera, which will include a sneak peek at the preempted show (the tongue-in-cheek Così: The Series has been rescheduled for October), at 7:30 p.m. tonight or tomorrow at the Merc, 2199 California Street; for information and tickets, $10, go to www.cabaret-otaku.com.
July 6-7, 7:30 p.m., 2012

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