Elixer of Love |Colorado Performing Arts Photography

Each year, Opera Colorado‘s Young Artists take two operas on the road. Cherity Koepke the Director of the Young Artist Program and Brett Sprague the Assistant Director adapt and restage the shows to work with an audience of school children. They’ve been introducing new shows into the mix, and last year’s new production was Elixer of Love. It’s a funny story about con-artists, love triangles, and root beer saloons. As a Colorado performing arts photographer, I was called in to photograph the show for marketing materials.

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Each season, the Young Artists go on a tour around Colorado. They pack up the set, props, costumes, and themselves in a van and drive all over the state. They performing operas at middle schools and high schools in rural areas and mountain towns. So many of these kids have never seen an opera before. These photos were used to market the show to schools who wanted the opera to perform for their students. They’re also used to attract audience members to the annual Family Day event and to encourage donors to sponsor a Young Artist.

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Since this show is a touring production, that goes to school auditoriums across the state, we didn’t have a formal performance space to photograph in. Instead, we used their rehearsal space, the Studio Loft at the Ellie Caulkins Opera House. There is some natural light in the space but no stage lights. With performing arts photography, you have to be adaptable. So I brought my own equipment to give the photos a more production feel to them. I have a very portable light set up that works perfectly for events and small performances like this!

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Want engaging production photos to reach new audiences and sell more tickets? I would love to help tell your story through photos. Contact me here or message me at jamie@jamiekraus.com

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Opera Singer Omar | Denver Headshot Photography

When Omar came to me interested in new audition photos, he said he hadn’t gotten headshots in six years and that he looked like he was 12 in them. That’s a really good reason to get new headshots! We already knew each other since he was a tenor in the Young Artist program at Opera Colorado. I get to work with the Young Artists a lot throughout the season but I don’t always have the chance to get to know them. That’s why I love Denver headshot photography so much. I get to spend time with awesome people, like Omar!

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Our session was set for February and with Colorado weather, we had no idea if it would be sunny or a snowstorm.  We got the perfect middle ground though! It was a beautiful, sunny day and it started snowing part way through the session. It was pretty much perfect. A lot of people think I only shoot portrait sessions in the summer, since my sessions are mostly outdoors. I love photographing all year long though! I can take whatever the weather will throw at me. Plus, everyone looks good in sweaters and scarves, right? Omar definitely rocked them in this session.

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We did Omar’s headshots at the Denver Center for the Performing Arts. This is a great location for performing artists. It has an aspirational element to it, it provides a wide range of backgrounds, and if the weather isn’t great, we can stay under the glass dome!

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A few months ago, I saw that they had torn down the bridge that the photos below were taken on. The Denver Performing Arts Center will be undergoing some major changes in the next couple years, and I guess this bridge was the first thing that had to go. It made me so sad to see this because the bridge was a really great spot for portraits. It got great light, it felt nice and private, and I loved the Convention Center facade in the background. Enjoy these photos, because you won’t see any more sessions here!

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Looking for a relaxed, fun headshot experience, with a lot of character? Contact me at jamie@jamiekraus.com.

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Family Day Part 2 | Colorado Performing Arts Photographer

Opera Colorado puts on a ton of awesome events to get kids excited about the opera. One of the biggest events they host is Family Day. On Family Day, kids and their parents come to the Ellie Caulkins Opera House to watch a show and do crafts relating to the story. The shows are all abridged, kid-friendly, English language versions of classic operas and there is a Q&A session after each show.

Family Day is a big event so I split it into two blogs. This show was the Elixir of Love. It a great show about love potions and conniving salesman and it has the perfect mix of humor and drama. The kids made their own elixirs of love and colored some root beer kegs. Part of this opera takes place in a bar so to make it kid friendly, the bar in this version only served root beer! The show was followed by a question and answer session and then the kids got to come up to look at the set and take pictures with the Young Artists. They loved playing with the costumes and props.

Opera Colorado’s season is officially over. That means the Young Artists are off on their own again, and the halls of the Ellie won’t be filled with singing voices for a while. I get to meet the new Young Artists in September and then the first opera of the season is in November. Next season brings another exciting line up of three unique operas! The season opens with La Bohème, the opera that inspired the Broadway musical and then movie, Rent. Then in January, there will be a world premier of Steal A Pencil for Me, a true story about two people who fall in love in a concentration camp during the Holocaust. The season will end with Falstaff, a tale of greed, seduction, and buffoonery

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Want engaging production photos to reach new audiences and sell more tickets? I would love to help tell your story through photos. Contact me here or message me at jamie@jamiekraus.com

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Family Day Part 1 | Colorado Opera Photographer

Opera Colorado puts on a ton of awesome events to get kids excited about the opera. One of the biggest events they host is Family Day. On Family Day, kids and their parents come to the Ellie Caulkins Opera House to watch a show and do crafts relating to the story. The shows are all abridged, kid-friendly, English language versions of classic operas and there is a Q&A session after each show.

Family Day is a big event so I split it into two blogs. The first show was Barber of Seville. It a comedy about love triangles and rectangles and trapezoids and it’s full of mischief, deception, and humor. The kids made glasses and mustaches so they could have their own disguises like the main character in the opera.

It’s almost the end of the season for Opera Colorado. This week, is their last week of mainstage shows until November. There are a couple other events before the season closes for good though. The Spring Tea, on May 20th is a fundraiser with tea and balloons at Grant Humphrey’s Mansion. I have donated a special session so be sure to bid on it! Get your tickets here.

The Young Artist Celebration is one of my favorite events of the year and is on May 21st at the Ellie Caulkins Opera House. It is the final performance before the Young Artists say goodbye. I love it because I get to see how much they’ve learned and improved since their first concert. This is a great event if you want to see what opera is all about but are on a budget. Tickets are cheap and the event is kid friendly (but there will also be wine)! Get tickets here.

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Want engaging production photos to reach new audiences and sell more tickets? I would love to help tell your story through photos. Contact me here or message me at jamie@jamiekraus.com

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Young Artist Farewell | Colorado Opera Photographer

Opera Colorado is in it’s off season right now but there is still lots going on to gear up for season 16-17. With three operas, an additional Young Artist, and a ton more events, this season is really exciting.

Just a few months ago, the season was ending and the Young Artists were singing in their farewell concert. They put on a beautiful and fun concert that the whole audience enjoyed!

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General Director Greg Carpenter

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Young Artist Danielle Lombardi

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Young Artists Charles Eaton and Emily Louise Robinson

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This little girl loves listening to opera in the car and this was her first concert. She was in awe when the first aria started and she loved meeting all the singers after the show.

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Young Artists Charles Eaton and Benjamin Werley

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Young Artists William Lee Bryan and Benjamin Werley

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Young Artist Danielle Lombardi

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Young Artist Emily Louise Robinson

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Opera Colorado Young Artists

Want engaging production photos to reach new audiences and sell more tickets? I would love to help tell your story through photos. Contact me here or message me at jamie@jamiekraus.com

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Opera Colorado’s The Scarlet Letter | Colorado Opera Photographer

One of the most amazing things so far about being a Colorado opera photographer, has been witnessing the development of a world premier. The Scarlet Letter was in the works for over five years! The book we all read in high school had never before been made into an opera. It took an incredible team of people at Opera Colorado to bring the show together, from the ground up. After seeing the full performance, I photographed the Student Matinee. This version was altered for a younger audience of students from all over the state and it was performed by the fantastic Opera Colorado Young Artists.

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William Lee Bryan and Charles Eaton

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Benjamin Werley and Emily Louise Robinson

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Opera Colorado Chorus

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Emily Louise Robinson

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William Lee Bryan

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Emily Louise Robinson

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Emily Louise Robinson, Benjamin Werley, and William Lee Bryan

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Charles Eaton, Hazel Kachline, and Kyle Erdos Knapp

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Benjamin Werley

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William Lee Bryan and Benjamin Werley

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Danielle Lombardi and Benjamin Werley

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Benjamin Werley and Danielle Lombardi

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Benjamin Werley and Danielle Lombardi

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Benjamin Werley

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Hazel Kachline

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Emily Louise Robinson and Hazel Kachline

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Benjamin Werley and Emily Louise Robinson

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Benjamin Werley and Emily Louise Robinson

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Opera Colorado Chorus

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Benjamin Werley and the Opera Colorado Chorus

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Hazlel Kachline, Emily Louise Robinson, William Lee Bryan, and Benjamin Werley

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Emily Louise Robinson, Benjamin Werley, and Hazel Kachline

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Emily Louise Robinson, Benjamin Werley, and Hazel Kachline

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Opera by Lori Laitman
Libretto by David Mason
Conductor: Ari Pelto
Stage Director: Jordan Braun
Chorus Master: John Baril
Scenic Design: Erhard Rom
Lighting Design: Robert Wierzel and Amith Chandrashaker
Projection Design: Topher Blair
Costume Design: Ann Piano
Wig and Makeup Design: Ronell Oliveri
Accompanist: Alaina DeBelleview
Young Artist Director: Cherity Koepke

Want engaging production photos to reach new audiences and sell more tickets? I would love to help tell your story through photos. Contact me here or message me at jamie@jamiekraus.com

Colorado Opera Photographer | Family Day Part 2

Opera Colorado has a so many awesome kid’s events throughout the year. As a Colorado opera photographer, I love being able to see kids engage in the arts and start to fall in love with opera. Family Day was such a great event, that I had to break it into two parts. The second half of the event was Carmen, performed by the Young Artists. I love that the audience was on stage with the performers. The kids really got to feel like they were part of the action.

P.S. If you know the story of Carmen, don’t worry. This was a very toned down, kid-friendly version.

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Emily Louise Robinson and Benjamin Werley in Carmen

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Danielle Lombardi and Benjamin Werley in Carmen

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Emily Louise Robinson in Carmen

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Emily Louise Robinson and Benjamin Werley in Carmen

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Danielle Lombardi, William Lee Bryan, Benjamin Werley, Charles Eaton, and Emily Louise Robinson, in Carmen

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Alaina DeBellevue

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Danielle Lombardi, William Lee Bryan, and Benjamin Werley in Carmen

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William Lee Bryan and Danielle Lombardi in Carmen

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Danielle Lombardi and Benjamin Werley in Carmen

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Danielle Lombardi and Benjamin Werley in Carmen

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Want engaging production and event photos to reach new audiences and sell more tickets? I would love to help tell your story through photos. Contact me here or message me at jamie@jamiekraus.com