In the Classroom — opera, cabaret, song!

Use the power of song and face-to-face stories to transform our lives. Preferring intimate venues, we explore the human condition with young audiences and offer an experience filled with compassion, character and guts.

Diverse Voices In Our Schools

In an effort to foster social-emotional learning with the youth of Chicago, Black Voices in Cabaret is leading a pilot project that will use the intimacy of cabaret to create essential conversations in the classroom. Themes include civil liberties, women’s rights, the fight against racism, and more.

One of America’s favorite singers of French song, Claudia Hommel brings her Cabaret-Paree magic to transport students to “Paris”. In classroom, auditorium, theatre, or restaurant, each show runs 40 to 90 minutes for 30 to 200 students.

Since 2008, Christine Steyer has brought Bellissima Opera Outreach to more than 24,000 young people from Kindergarten to 12th grade. Our diverse professionals are soloists with some of the country’s leading opera companies and orchestras. They bring unamplified vocal music to the classroom while inviting students to respond to classical aria and song with drawings, poetry, and stories of their own.

(The youth cast of Future Perfect, an opera created from the writings of 1,300 area youth.)

New for 2024, Catherine Thomson and Anita Kallen have crafted two HERstory shows to reveal the way that Women’s Right to Vote was won; and tales of Trailblazing Female Firsts.

Our work as singers and actors is grounded in the intimacy of cabaret and infused with language, poetry, social history, and sense of place. We use songs to reach across borders of time, place, and culture. Performances can be accompanied by workshops and master classes that encourage youth to see themselves as makers of world history, enrich their self-confidence and self-discovery.

Whether opera or cabaret, theatrical song or folk favorites, our programs bring together music, poetry, drama, and visual arts —a fabulous way to engage children’s mental, emotional, physical and spiritual being.