An information and reading list of facts about the state of opera in the UK according to subject:

  • Performers

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1. What is the difference between operas and musicals?

Once upon a time I read somewhere that the difference comes down to WHO is performing: when trained singers act it's an opera; when trained actors sing it's a musical - and you'll never see an opera singer using a microphone! This echoes from a different perspective the definition given here by Anthony Tommasini in the NY Times: "Both genres seek to combine words and music in dynamic, felicitous and, to invoke that all-purpose term, artistic ways. But in opera, music is the driving force; in musical theater, words come first."