• Five Times That Opera Scored All the Goals

    By COC Staff

    At this year's FIFA World Cup, conductor Valery Gergiev leads the Mariinsky Orchestra in the opening ceremony in Moscow, with performances from international opera stars including Anna Netrebko, Plácido Domingo, Juan Diego Flórez, Yusif Eyvazov, and Ildar Abdrazakov. It’s certainly not the first time that opera is being called upon to provide the soundtrack to bigger-than-life, high stakes moments in spectator sport—which makes perfect sense for an art form that reaches beyond the merely ordinary to display superhuman feats of athleticism and big emotion on the grandest scale.

    Here are some of our favourite performances in the history of opera as sports soundtrack.

    1. FIFA World Cup (Spain, 1982)

    Tenor Plácido Domingo sang the official song for the FIFA World Cup when Spain hosted the event in 1982.

    2. XX Olympic Winter Games (Turin, Italy, 2006)

    Luciano Pavarotti’s performance of "Nessun Dorma" (Puccini's Turandot) at the 2006 Winter Olympics in Turin, Italy marked the tenor's last public performance before his death in September 2007. 

    3. XXI Olympic Winter Games (Vancouver, Canada

    Canadian soprano Measha Brueggergosman serenaded the home team when she sang the Olympic hymn at the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver.

    4. Super Bowl XLVIII (2014)

    This one made history - on February 2, 2014, soprano Renée Fleming became the first opera singer (male or female) to perform the American national anthem at the Super Bowl! 

    5. XXII Olympic Winter Games (Sochi, Russia, 2014)

    Talk about a homecoming treat. Soprano Anna Netrebko performed the Olympic Hymn when the 2014 Winter Olympics were held in her native Russia.

    Take your culture game to the next level with our monthly eOpera.

    main photo credit: Plácido Domingo by Aris Messinis, Anna Netrebko by Vladimir Kervorkov.
    Posted in COC News


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