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7/17/2012 Online community opera Free Will is ready for its premiere on stage and online
Free Will – the world’s first opera produced by an online community – will premiere on the 21st of July 2012 in Savonlinna, Finland. Hundreds of people all over the world have participated in making an opera. Free Will’s world premiere is live streamed from hs.fi on Saturday 21st July 2012 at 7pm.

Opera By You online community has helped to write the libretto, compose the music and design the sets and costumes – from beginning to end. The Savonlinna Opera Festival has placed world-class soloists, a chorus of 80, a symphony orchestra and its entire production machinery at the community’s disposal. The ideas and contribution of hundreds of people are now completed as the world’s first online community opera.

- The result is extremely beautiful melodic music. Strong and opinionated story, stylish and surprising visualization and staging that activate the audience will affect the viewers, Head of Production Päivi Salmi tells.

Free Will is about a fight between good and evil in the year 2012. Three geniuses
Mozart, Oscar Wilde and Joan of Arc are seen on the leading roles. The fourth lead is Lucifer. In the opera God has had enough of all the misery that people are suffering from and calls a meeting with the angels. They decide to send a couple of dead genius back to Earth to make things better. They are aiming to make a huge difference in science and art and create world peace.

Free Will opera rehearsals can also be followed online via live stream http://www.ustream.tv/channel/opera-by-you-free-will.

Rehearsal schedule:
(gmt +2, Finnish time)

- Wed 17th of July at 10 am
- Thu 18th of July at 10 am
- Fri 20th of July at 10 am

Opera by You seminar explores crowdsourcing in culture production 21st of July at 1 pm

”Crowdsourcing in Culture Production" -seminar, held on the same day as the premiere, deals with Finnish Savonlinna Opera Festival’s crowdsourcing opera production.  The purpose of the seminar is to explore crowdsourcing as a resource for business and the Opera by You project. The participants of the seminar include some well-known Finnish speakers.


- Pia Erkinheimo, Head of Crowdsourcing, Nokia IdeasProject
- Peter Vesterbacka, Mighty Eagle, Rovio
- Timo Vuorensola, Director, Blind Spot Pictures

- Opera by You operative group:
 Markus Fagerudd (Composer), Jere Erkkilä (Stage Director), Iida Hämeen-Anttila (Scriptwriter) and Päivi Salmi (Head of Production)

Further information:

Free Will opera and Crowdsourcing in Culture Production seminar (52,50 €/person) http://www.operafestival.fi/In_English/Front_page/mainmenu/specialoffer_freewill.iw3

Accreditation/ media:

Accreditation to Crowdsourcing in Culture Production seminar & Free Will world premiere http://www.oopperajuhlat.fi/In_English/Front_page/mainmenu/Media/Accreditation.iw3

Päivi Salmi, Project Manager, Savonlinna Opera Festival:
+358 40 774 0919

The Savonlinna Opera Festival in brief
The Savonlinna Opera Festival is the Finnish cultural event best known internationally and a leading Finnish tourist attraction. It records an annual total audience of around 60,000, a good 10 per cent from abroad. The Savonlinna Opera Festival is a modern pioneer in the world of opera, presenting not only the classics but also new and innovative productions. A visit to the Savonlinna Opera Festival is an all-round experience made up of first-class opera performances and concerts, the unique atmosphere of a medieval castle and the beautiful town of Savonlinna in summer, set amid lakes and forests. The Festival gets about 70% of its funding from ticket revenue, the rest in the form of grants from the Ministry of Education and the town of Savonlinna, and partnership agreements.