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Serenades come to the street where you live

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OPERA AL FRESCO: If you can't get out to a concert, let the concert come to you.

OPERA AL FRESCO: If you can't get out to a concert, let the concert come to you.

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Perth residents get to enjoy their own personal outdoor concert with Freeze Frame Opera.

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Freeze Frame Opera is bringing opera to people's driveways and doorsteps throughout Perth as it introduces new audiences to the magic of opera.

The small opera company performs street serenades from the back of a 1975 Bedford truck bought recently with donations from community members.

The serenades provide performance opportunities to young professional singers while people get to enjoy their own personal outdoor street concert.

What began as a single weekend of street singing in the wake of the coronavirus outbreak has snowballed and Freeze Frame Opera is now being booked for neighbourhood street events and birthday, engagement and anniversary parties. People bring out their chairs, glasses of wine and a platter or two.

The Bedford being used as a stage is an old farm vehicle from Denmark. It featured in the film adaptation of Tim Winton's Breath, filmed in the South West.

WHAT A BEAUTY: The classic Bedford truck that will serve as a stage for Freeze Frame Opera.

WHAT A BEAUTY: The classic Bedford truck that will serve as a stage for Freeze Frame Opera.

Artistic director Rachel McDonald said some people ask the question, "Why make art when people are dealing with coronavirus?"

"Toilet paper is essential while art can be perceived as frivolous and elitist," she said

"And yet art has always flourished in hard times. Why? Because people need it. We need it because it reminds us of our shared humanity.

"The function of art is generous; it's about helping people process human experience. That's our job as artists. We unlock feelings. We provide recognition opportunities within people.

"This is why people cry at weddings when the singing starts and why people look happy and relaxed coming out of a comedy gig.

"When people are having a lot of feelings our job doesn't get less important. It gets more important.

"Community storytelling, beautiful music, truthful acting, entertainment, all these things connect us up to each other while simultaneously helping us with what's going on inside.

"Which is at least as valuable as toilet paper."

MUSIC FOR ALL: From street concerts to birthday parties, the performances are for everyone.

MUSIC FOR ALL: From street concerts to birthday parties, the performances are for everyone.

Freeze Frame Opera a not-for-profit association that aims to spread the love of opera by presenting opera classics in new, accessible, locally made productions.

It reframes operatic classics to make them relevant and entertaining for modern audiences.

"Our shows are specifically designed to introduce opera to new audiences and to sustain the enthusiasm of those who are already opera lovers," Rachel said.

"We have produced critically acclaimed productions and concerts, bringing opera to contemporary Perth audiences who may have previously found opera inaccessible or archaic.

"Our productions retain the essential qualities for a magical performance - packaged beautifully to create an unforgettable experience."

The Bedford truck bought for the street serenades was officially launched over the long weekend, replacing an old ute previously used.

A 25-minute street concert with two professional opera singers, live accompaniment by a pianist and lighting costs $600.

An external power point needs to be provided.

To book a street or window serenade (if people are housebound), visit www.freezeframeopera.com/the-opera-truck

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