Lyric Opera House Baltimore

Lyric Opera House Baltimore is one of the premier performing arts venues in Maryland, and this has a lot to do with its historical appeal and its world-class acoustics. Past Lyric Opera House performances featured some of the biggest personalities in American history, and you might be interested to know that the venue has stood on the same Midtown spot since it opened in 1894. It is worth noting that the Lyric Opera House Baltimore was modeled after the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam. The Concertgebouw, which opened in 1888, didn't take long to establish itself as one of the world's finest concert halls, due mostly to its impressive acoustics. Today, a variety of performances and shows take place at this venue.

Some music critics have gone as far as saying that the Lyric Opera House Baltimore exhibits better acoustics than the Metropolitan Opera House in New York City. After the inaugural 1894 performance, which featured the Boston Symphony Orchestra and famed Austrian soloist Nellie Melba, Melba made it a point to remark on the venue's perfect acoustics. The acoustics of the hall are undeniably high quality, though it is interesting to note that some of the earliest Lyric Opera House Performances weren't of the musical variety. In 1905, a boxing match featuring the lightweight champion of the day was held there, and that same year, an electric cooking exhibition was the highlight of the Food Show. It wasn't all about boxing and cooking in 1905, however. That year also saw Enrico Caruso perform with the Metropolitan Opera Company. This performance is regarded as one of the greatest Lyric Opera House performances to date.

Some of the most renowned conductors in recent history have led musical performances at the Lyric Opera House Baltimore, and among the orchestras that have performed are the Metropolitan Opera and the Philadelphia Orchestra. The Baltimore Symphony Orchestra also performed at the Lyric Opera House until moving to another venue in 1982, and before it went into liquidation in 2009, the Baltimore Opera Company called the Lyric home. Thanks to the excellent acoustics, former Lyric Opera House performances also include a number of lectures by famous speakers such as Will Rogers, Amelia Earhart, and William Jennings Bryan.

While the Baltimore Opera ended its almost 60-year run at the Lyric Opera House in 2009, the venue is still committed to bringing world-class musical performances to Maryland's largest city. The hall can accommodate a variety of performances, including comedy acts and theater shows, so you never know what might be going on during your time in town. If no Lyric Opera House events are going on during your trip to Baltimore, you might see what's on tap at some of the city's other performing arts venues, such as the Hippodrome Theater and the Joseph Meyerhoff Symphony Hall. The latter has been home to the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra since 1982, and as is true of the Lyric, it is known for its top-notch acoustics.

While the Baltimore Opera no longer performs, the future may see the organization's return to the Lyric Opera House. Until then, Baltimore visitors can consider attending shows that are offered by other area opera companies. Washington D.C. is just 38 miles away, for example, and it is home to the Washington National Opera.

Image: spike55151 (flickr)
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