Technology, Audio-visual Adaptation and Cultural Re-education of Opera


  • Jaume Radigales Ramon Llull University
  • Isabel Villanueva-Benito



Considering the various uses that cinema has made of opera, this paper focusses on the new exhibitive and distributive mediums of musical theatre on the big screen today. This ranges from live broadcasts to the use of the screen in contemporary opera stagings. The paper raises several challenges, but particularly analyses the common market shared between opera and the audio-visual industry, from the perspective of the opera business in theatres. After defining the technological and commercial features that transform these broadcasts into sustainable film products, the focus is on ascertaining the audio-visual properties that establish opera simulcasts as a new media event in sociological terms.

Once the technological perspective has been explored, the paper goes on to an aesthetic analysis of the audio-visual formats offered by combining opera and cinema. This analysis also offers an explanation of some of the sociological behaviours adopted by people attending films in theatres. Determining the characteristic narrative quality of opera enjoyed by audiences can facilitate a new exploration in the film industry of the future relations between these traditional art forms.


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Author Biographies

Jaume Radigales, Ramon Llull University

Jaume Radigales is an associate professor at Ramon Llull University. PhD in History of Art (University of Barcelona), he teaches Aesthetics and Audio-visual Narrative at the Blanquerna School of Communication and International Relations (Ramon Llull University). He is also an associate professor in the masters programme La música com a art interdisciplinar (Music as an Interdisciplinary Art) at University of Barcelona and some years ago taught PhD courses at University of Salamanca. His research focuses on the relationship between music and audio-visual products, particularly between opera and new audio-visual formats. He led various R&I projects and has published more than 15 books, as well as numerous articles in academic, specialised and general magazines. He is also a music reviewer in the Catalan newspaper Ara and the radio station Catalunya Música.

Isabel Villanueva-Benito

Isabel Villanueva-Benito is an associate professor at the International University of Catalonia (UIC Barcelona). She holds a PhD in Communication and a degree in Audio-visual Communication and Advertising and Public Relations. Post-graduate in Music (singing and composing). She is also a Visiting Researcher at the University of California, Los Angeles and has been a Fulbright alumnus since 2016. She has published a dozen articles on music, performing arts, audio-visual communication and new technologies. She works as a member of the Project in Contemporary Music and Audio-visual Culture in The Center for Music Innovation, California, US.




How to Cite

Radigales, J., & Villanueva-Benito, I. . (2022). Technology, Audio-visual Adaptation and Cultural Re-education of Opera. Tripodos, (51), 131–142.