In the Wings

Backstage glimpses with Boston Lyric Opera

Opera in an Ice Rink?

Jan 23, 2018 10:00:00 AM
By Anna B. Labykina

Anna B. Labykina, Boston Lyric Opera's Production & Technical Director, talks about why DCR Steriti Memorial Rink is the perfect unconventional venue for opera:

When we first walked into Steriti Skating Rink in the Summer of 2016, we had one mission on our minds: to find a rehearsal space large enough to park 6 vintage Mercedes Benz vehicles for the rehearsal process of Carmen.

We were NOT disappointed: a regulation skating rink that totals 15,000 square feet was surely the answer. That the winning location was two blocks away from all the major eateries of the North End, and boasted stunning views of the harbor, all made the venue that much more appealing. The ground level load-in door was a great bonus.

Carmen - Steriti.jpgThe cast of Carmen rehearsing in Steriti Rink in the Fall of 2016.

After a successful rehearsal process, where we used only about a third of the space available, the venue remained in our minds as a possible Opera Annex location - after all, a completely open space is a carte blanche. And unlike some other recent venues, it had one more advantage: regular ceiling support trusses, where anything and everything could be suspended from. It’s as if the Rink itself was saying to the creative mind: please shape me in any way you’d like, hang any drapes and lights and walls, and make me your own.

While we are still in the throes of creating the experience of Trouble in Tahiti, the creative team is very excited by the possibilities of enclosing the cavernous space into an intimate salon evoked by the music, and we feel that there is something very subversive about bringing mid-century music to a sports venue which recently hosted the World Skating Championships. After all, the art of the figure skater and that of an opera singer are one and the same in the emotions they bring out in the spectator, and the training they must undergo to become virtuosos.


Take a look at this lovely space!
The Steriti space was used for Taste of North End.

Enjoy this unconventional venue! Buy a ticket for Tahiti, running May 11-20 and see the DCR Steriti Memorial Rink like never before...

 Buy TAHITI Tickets


Topics: New Production, venue, #tahitiBLO

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