Santa Fe Opera
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Santa Fe Opera information
Lonely Planet review
Many come to Santa Fe for this and this alone: the theater is an architectural marvel, with nearly 360-degree views of wind-carved sandstone wilderness crowned with sunsets and moonrises, and at center stage the world's finest talent performs Western civilization's masterworks. It's still the Wild West, though; you can even wear jeans – just try that in New York City.
Gala festivities begin two hours before the curtain rises, when the ritual tailgate party is rendered glamorous in true Santa Fe style right in the parking lot. Bring your own caviar and brie, make reservations for the buffet dinner and lecture or a picnic dinner, or have your own private caterer – several customize the menu to the opera's theme – pour the champagne. Prelude Talks , free to all ticket holders, are offered in Stieren Orchestra Hall one hour and two hours before curtain to accommodate various dining schedules. Shuttles run to and from the event from Santa Fe and Albuquerque; reserve through the opera box office.
Youth Night at the Opera offers families a chance to watch dress rehearsals a few nights each summer, for bargain rates; one precedes the run of each of the season's operas – with brief talks aimed at audience members ages 6 to 22. Backstage tours offer opportunities to poke around the sets, costume and storage areas.