Attending the Opera

If it’s your first time attending the opera, you may have some questions about etiquette and what to expect. Generally, your experience will be similar to other live theater and music events. If we didn’t answer your questions here, please don’t hesitate to email us.

What should I wear?

There is no dress code at Opera Cleveland. Patrons arrive in everything from black tie formal to business attire to jeans. Be comfortable and enjoy the evening.

When should I arrive and what is the policy for late admittance?

We recommend that you arrive downtown 30-45 minutes before the performance to ensure plenty of time to park and enter the theatre. To minimize disruption of the opera and other patrons, late arrivals will be seated at the discretion of the ushers.

When should I applaud?

It is generally accepted to clap after an aria or at the end of an act. When in doubt, follow the lead of the other patrons.

How can I understand the words the singers are singing?

All of our productions have surtitles projected above the stage and on monitors toward the back of the house. Even when we have a production sung in English, surtitles help you understand the story.

How can I respect the experience of my fellow patrons?

We ask that you turn off all cellphones, pagers and alarms. Please unwrap cough drops prior to the show and refrain from talking. The opera you are seeing isn’t amplified–IT IS LIVE! Any small noise can be heard by the artists and other patrons.

Are children allowed?

Yes. We leave this to your discretion. However, only bring children who are able to sit still and quietly for long periods of time.

Will there be intermission?

We generally have two twenty minute intermissions. This will be noted in your program. Beverage service is offered in the lobby and upper level.