People chanting “Go Flames Go!” isn’t something you’d usually expect at an opera rehearsal. But it’s right in character with the cast getting ready for Cowtown Opera‘s new show Ticket to Love.
The romantic comedy tells the story of a flight attendant and a realtor meeting at a Calgary Flames game.
“We hit it off right away,” singer Jason Ragan, who plays the realtor, said. “We’re both die-hard Flames fans!”
It’s a show aimed at both opera lovers and more casual listeners.
“It’s kind of a mashup,” singer Lauren Woods, who plays the flight attendant, said. “Every opera pop hit you can imagine set to English words.”
Those new lyrics are full of references local audiences will recognize.
“Way to go Monahan, great shot!” sings Ragan, with Woods singing back to him: “I prefer Goudreau when he shoots the puck!”
By referring to the two star Flames players, while customizing the opera classics, the company is carrying on a tradition that goes back almost a decade.
“The great thing about Cowtown Opera is that we really like to set our stories in Calgary,” Ragan said.
Being part of a romantic story that starts at the Saddledome comes naturally to the two singers.
“We’re definitely both Flames fans!” Woods said. “So it’s easy to act that part.”
With the team enjoying its best season in years, the performers are hoping heightened interest in the Flames will help attract people to their opera..
“Actually, a couple of years ago when the Flames were last in the playoffs, we were asked to audition together (as) backup anthem singers for the Flames,” Ragan said. “We didn’t get it because they weren’t in the playoffs too long, but hopefully this year — Stanley Cup!”
Ticket to Love runs Friday, March 8 through Sunday, March 10 at the cSPACE King Edward Arts Centre in southwest Calgary.
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