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Classical 101

Festival Is Incubator for New Operas

Since the genre of opera entered the world more than 400 years ago, countless Normas, Mimìs, Leporellos and Wotans have strutted across the boards at opera houses around the globe. If you're an opera lover, you certainly wouldn't want these folks - however in love, forlorn, agitated or generally verklemmt they may be - to walk off stage and out of the theater forever. But if you are, in fact, an opera fan, then you do want the art form to teem with new creative life forever. That's the basic point of New York's InsightALT Festival, an initiative of the American Lyric Theater that fosters the composition of new operas. The 2013 InsightALT Festival closes today, after public stagings and concert readings of three new operas and discussions about them. The subjects of this year's festival operas range from the life and strange death of scientist Alan Turing, to a soldier's experience with post-traumatic stress disorder, to the violence of the Mexican drug wars - subjects that inject today's issues and concerns into the art form of opera. Read more about this year's InsightALT Festival operas: Crowd-Sourcing an Opera (NYT)