Tapestry Opera
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Tapestry Opera

Toronto, Ontario, Canada | Established. Jan 01, 2013

Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Established on Jan, 2013
Band Electronic Classical


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The best kept secret in music



When I first heard about Tapestry Opera's Tap:EX Tables Turned, I wasn't very optimistic. A show that proudly touts in its headline “opera singer meets DJ” and that it will define the future of opera sounds more like an embarrassing “let’s make opera hip for the kids” shtick—like the time Megadeth’s Dave Mustaine wanked on guitar alongside the San Diego Symphony Orchestra. However, after sitting in an art studio while watching a kimono clad opera singer do beta blockers and sing over remixed versions of classic films, I realized I had probably spoke too soon.

During the first of two acts, featured soprano Carla Huhtanen sat awkwardly on stage while singing and mimicking actors from the The Sound of Music and Alfred Hitchcock’s The Birds, like a lonely fangirl in her bedroom. Meanwhile, Montreal-based composer, Nicole Lizée was behind the boards taking well-known scenes from each film and chopping them up into new but oddly recognizable pieces. For instance, she did a five minute loop of Maria von Trapp tuning her guitar and singing “let’s start at the very beginning,” which made for a very creepy version of the Sound of Music classic “Do-Re-Mi”. Or when she turned Tippi Hedren’s upbeat piano performance in The Birds into a slow trip-hop dirge that would make even Geoff Barrow proud. As the show reached its climax, Huhtanen obsessively watched scenes of opera diva, Maria Callas, at one point taking pills in reference to Callas’ famous beta blockers, which the late singer took to calm herself from anxiety attacks before shows. It was a vivid if uncomfortably honest portrayal of an artist overcoming their fears and chasing the longtail of fame. The show would end with Huhtanen confidently standing up and assuming the role of the diva with her voice washing over the room. Fitting, as the night was all about reimagining pop culture icons while creating huge and unique spectacles, something of which, opera, since its very inception, has always strived to do. And that’’s what makes Tapestry Opera and Tap:EX Tables Turned great, because they give a glimpse as to what opera can offer us in our multimedia savvy world, and what we’re missing out when we ignored it. Impressed by the showing, I followed up with Tapestry Opera’s creative director, Michael Mori, to find out more.

Photo By Dahlia Katz

Noisey: Given how much opera has changed over the centuries, do you see yourself as radically breaking traditions or returning to old ones?
Michael Mori: We are radically breaking from the 20th century tradition of “the opera experience” by rejecting conventions upheld for almost a hundred years. In the very first operas, as in Tap:Ex Tables Turned, artists of various disciplines came together in the name of drama and music. Works drew upon familiar subjects and themes. With its growth in popularity, more politically relevant ideas were brought to the forefront and opera was used as an instrument of social commentary and even revolution. We're bringing that intention and relevance back.

Is there anything you think is lost or lacking in mainstream opera culture that TAP:EX reclaims?
Definitely, it reclaims an acknowledgment of the time and culture we live in. At one time, all educated people were familiar with classic cultural references: Greek mythology, classical English, German, and French poets and playwrights, and so on. That generation is now a minority and Canada and the US no longer identify as an extension of Europe. Instead, we are an independent multicultural society that is far more connected to classic films than classic literature and mythology. It is only logical to use this rich source of contemporary nostalgia as something that belongs to our generation in the same way that classical references belonged to previous generations. - Noisey Music by Vice

"Indies Rock"

Article is a pdf--please go to url to read - Opera Canada

"Michael Mori Charts a New Course for Tapestry Theatre"

Article is a pdf--please see url - Toronto Star

"Some good operatic shots from Tapestry in Toronto"

Article is a pdf--url is above - National Post

"In Review: Tapestry Briefs Booster Shots"

Article is a pdf--see url above. - schmopera

"Members of Fucked Up Bring 'Metallurgy' Opera to Toronto"

If you thought boundary-pushing punk rock and the ancient art of opera were mutually exclusive, think again. Members of Fucked Up have teamed with director Michael Hidetoshi Mori for a new production called Metallurgy that will allow audiences to watch the two worlds collide this fall in Toronto.

The performances will be come to life as part of Tapestry Opera's Tap:Ex series, and feature music from Fucked Up's Mike Haliechuk, Jonah Falco and Josh Zucker. Their compositions will be given an operatic twist thanks to vocals from mezzo-soprano Krisztina Szabó and tenor David Pomeroy.

The show's roster also includes guest composer Ivan Barbotin and guest librettist David James Brock.

According to a press release, Metallurgy aims to encapsulate Tap:Ex's commitment to "experimentation and innovation," exploring "modes through which opera might assume a twenty-first century rebirth."

The production's four-show run begins on November 19 and will wrap up with a day of double performances on November 21 at the Ernest Balmer Studio. If you're interested in jumping on board for the sonic adventure, full details can be found through Tapestry Opera here. - Exclaim

"F--ked Up and Tapestry Opera team up for Metallurgy performances"

Toronto band F--ked Up has been pushing the boundaries of punk music for over a decade and now they’re testing their skills in the realm of opera. The band will be working with Tapestry Opera’s Tap:Ex series and director Michael Hidetoshi for a new production called Metallurgy which will premiere this fall in Toronto.

F--ked Up’s Mike Haliechuk, Jonah Falco and Josh Zucker will provide the music for Metallurgy while mezzo-soprano Krisztina Szabó and tenor David Pomeroy will take the reins on vocals. The show is rounded out by guest composer Ivan Barbotin and librettist David James Brock.

In a press release, Tapestry explains that Metallurgy “explores modes through which opera might assume a 21st century rebirth.”

Metallurgy kicks off a limited four-show run on Nov. 19 at Toronto’s Ernest Balmer Studio and will wrap up with two performances on Nov. 21.

For more information about Metallurgy and Tapestry Opera, head over to their website.

article url: http://music.cbc.ca/#!/blogs/2015/10/F--ked-Up-and-Tapestry-Opera-team-up-for-Metallurgy-performances - CBC (Canadian Broadcasting Company)

"Toronto punk band F*cked Up goes to the opera"

Toronto's Tapestry Opera isn't your typical opera company. While it showcases some of Canada's top musical and theatrical talent, it also offers a rather different experience than what you'd find within the confines of the Four Seasons Centre. And, it's collaborating with members of Toronto's F*cked Up to kick off its 36th season.
Tapestry Opera describes its Tap:Ex Metallurgy as a combination of opera and punk music. It's the third show in its Tap:Ex series, a series that aims to explore the future of the operatic art form. Previously, it brought turntable artist and DJ Nicole Lizée on stage with acclaimed soprano Carla Huhtanen.

F*cked Up members Jonah Falco, Mike Haliechuk and Josh Zucker created Tap:Ex Metallurgy with Michael Hidetoshi Mori, who's also the director. To round out the creative team, Ivan Barbotin was the guest composer and David James Brock the librettist. Jordan de Souza, Tapestry's resident conductor, will play piano (or keys).

Mezzo-soprano Krisztina Szabó, who's currently playing Thisbe in the Canadian Opera Company's (COC) world premiere of Pyramus and Thisbe, will perform it alongside Canadian tenor David Pomeroy.

Now, this isn't F*cked Up's first foray into opera. The Polaris Prize-winning band contributed a 17 minute Italian art song for the Broadsheet Music: A Year in Review compilation project by Arts & Crafts, the Globe and Mail and the COC.

Tap:Ex Metallurgy runs from November 19 to November 21 and tickets are on sale now. - blogto


Still working on that hot first release.




Tapestry is a professional theatre and opera producer. In addition to producing a concert and chamber opera season, Tapestry has become an international crossroads for diverse musical and dramatic artists inspired to contribute to the creation and evolution of new opera. Creation begins with multiple collaborations at the Composer-Librettist Laboratory (LibLab), where eight writers and composers are introduced and produce sixteen opera shorts under intense conditions. Successful partnerships may result in commissioning new full length works by Tapestry or by other producers. Evolution exists not only in the content and style of the music and text but also in performance practice.  Tapestry Explorations (Tap:Ex) is Canada’s premiere program for the evolution and advancement of opera performance practice and seeks inspiration from other art forms in both art and popular streams.

Tapestry is also committed to sharing the power of contemporary music and drama in strengthening our communities.  The Youth INside Opera Education Program gives youth and children from St. Jamestown, Toronto a full scholarship program to train and mentor with classical and hip hop professionals in the creation and performance of their own opera.   New Opera 101 is an annual masterclass and professional debut opportunity for emerging artists with classical training to learn contemporary repertoire and interpretation with leading performers.  Our children’s operas, Elijah’s Kite by Camyar Chai & James Rolfe and Get Stuffedby Alexis Diamond & Richard Payne have toured to over 30,000 students across Ontario and have been produced by other companies in Canada and abroad. 

Tapestry productions have been nominated for over 30 Dora Mavor Moore Awards, garnering over 10.  The most recent world premieres have been Pub Operas (G. Williams, D. Brock) and Shelter (J. Palmer, J. Salverson) with an upcoming world premiere in 2015 of M’dea Undone (J. Harris, M. Chan).

Some of Tapestry’s most critically acclaimed works include Nigredo Hotel (N. Gotham, A. MacDonald),Sanctuary Song (A. Richardson, M. Chan), Still the Night (T. Tova), and the historic Iron Road (Chan Ka Nin, M. Brownell).  Tapestry regularly collaborates with leading partners including The Griffin Trio, The Elmer Eisler Singers, The Canadian Opera Company, Theatre Direct, Scottish Opera, American Opera Projects, Edmonton Opera, and Tarragon Theatre.

Tapestry is a proud member of:

  • Canadian Actors Equity Association
  • International Society for the Performing Arts
  • opera.ca
  • OPERA America
  • Professional Association of Canadian Theatres
  • Toronto Alliance for the Performing Arts


Forget the opera stereotypes of horned singers, stuffy tuxedos, and gowns. Tapestry is drama and music, raw and intimate. We develop collaboration between Canada’s leading playwrights and experienced composers, with the goal of advancing the most vital, original work in new opera. Tapestry productions are dramatically rich and authentically contemporary.


You will experience a raw, emotional genre performed by the world’s leading talent in the intimate Ernest Balmer Studio. Our larger main-stage productions are performed at offsite locations, but no matter how large the venue, the intimacy of a Tapestry show remains. Close enough to touch, performers breathe power into stories penned by such dramatic luminaries as Ann-Marie MacDonald, Atom Egoyan, Hannah Moscovitch, Anusree Roy, Colleen Murphy, and Marjorie Chan. After the show, stay for drinks, mingle with performers and creators, and offer feedback to inform the development of these productions.

Band Members