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11/23/2011 Voting: What should stars of the opera Free Will look like?
Work on community opera project Opera By You continues all around the world, both online and offline, as Free Will’s singers get chosen. Stars’ task will be to interpret what the community has created. While stars orientate to their roles, the community votes on their looks.

The world’s first opera that utilizes crowdsourcing has come to a stage, where the first singers have been chosen. Yet community’s work online continues and the next phase is to vote on what the characters will look like on stage. Free Will’s world premiere is on 21st July 2012 in Savonlinna Opera Festival.

”The online community has actively participated in costume designing. We have chosen the best ones out of the pictures that members sent us, and now everyone has a chance to vote for their favourite looks. The community plays a strong role on what Free Will will finally look like in Savonlinna”, tells Essi Palo, Costume Designer for Savonlinna Opera Festival and Opera By You project.

Voting period is 23.11.2011–11.12.2011 and takes place at www.operabyyou.com

“There is a variety of styles – from Lady Gaga to traditional office look. It will be interesting to see which ones finally get chosen”, Palo describes.

Free Will bursts young energy
Modern opera has young, rising singers as stars. Current casts are American soprano Jennifer Rowley and Argentinian bass-baritone Matias Tosi. Rowley represents female devil Lucifer and Tosi’s role is to act as Oscar Wilde in year 2012. The rest of the cast will be chosen during winter.

Free Will and Opera By You in brief
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 supposed to make a huge difference in science and art and create world peace.

The three geniuses returning on Earth are Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, Oscar Wilde and Jeanne D’Arc. Two angels and a female devil (Lucifer) with their assistants will back them up.

Lead roles: Mozart (famous pop star), Oscar Wilde (Secretary-General of UN), Jeanne D’Arc (World bank leader), Lucifer, God (choir), Giants (choir)
Supporting roles: angels and devil’s assistants

Savonlinna Opera Festival launched Opera By You project in May 2010. In the project anyone can contribute to the creation of an opera. Any member of the online community can help to write the libretto, compose the music and design the sets and costumes – from beginning to end. Hundreds of people from all around the world have taken part in creating the opera and thousands of people follow it online. Working alongside with the online community are operatives, a group of opera professionals. The community opera Free Will will be premiered at the Savonlinna Opera Festival on 21st of July 2012.

Anyone can join in making an opera at www.wreckamovie.com/operabyyou.
The voting, press material, images & trailers: www.operabyyou.com

Jennifer Rowley: www.jenniferrowley.com
Matias Tosi: www.matiastosi.com

Enquiries / costume design:
Essi Palo, Costume Designer
+358 0400 554 532

Enquiries/ Opera By You:
Jan Hultin, Opera Director
+358 0400 483 578

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.