Personal tools

The Science and Technology of Music

Home Activities Seminar Series Niels Lund: "The World Opera: An introduction and some preliminary results"

Skip to content. | Skip to navigation

Niels Lund: "The World Opera: An introduction and some preliminary results"

— filed under:

Niels Lund is Professor at the University of Tromsø, Norway.

  • Seminar
When Feb 20, 2009
from 10:00 AM to 12:00 PM
Where Strathcona Music Building, 555 Sherbrooke St. West, C-201
Add event to calendar vCal


The concept of “distributed opera” arose from an experimental documentation research project and workshop performance at UC-Berkeley (2005-2006), and drew inspiration from the Bay Area tradition of exploring the “almost impossible”.  This grew into the World Opera, an international platform for exploring new formats for making exciting opera and experimenting with the role of new technologies in this context.  Several prominent opera houses, opera academies and technology labs from around the world, including pioneers in distributed music performance from CCRMA and CIRMMT, are actively participating in the project. The latest activities include a simulation test being conducted at CIRMMT from February 13 to February 19. Voice students from the Schulich School of Music will be singing duets by Mozart, Verdi and Gershwin, as if they were distributed between locations in North America and Scandinavia. As this is the first formal study of distributed opera singing, a major question to be addressed is whether the singers will be able to “reach” other, not only to agree on a common tempo, but equally important, to form an emotional connection.  This seminar will describe our preliminary results and impressions of these tests, which are highly challenging in both the artistic and technical sense. 


Dr. Lund became the first full professor in the Department of Documentation Studies, University of Tromsø, Norway, in 1996. He has an M.A. in History and Ethnology (DK), and a D.E.A. in History and Civilisation (FR).  He was Associate Professor at the Royal School of Library and Information Science in Denmark from 1975 to 1988 and Visiting Professor at the University of California, Berkeley in 2001 and 2005-06. He also founded the Document Academy in 2001, which organizes DOCAM conferences. Dr. Lund’s research interests focus on libraries and general document theory and more recently, on documents in health care (Electronic Patient Records) and the arts (opera). In 2006, he initiated the World Opera project (, aiming to create a worldwide distributed opera stage with performers in multiple locations, making one coherent opera performance for audiences across the multiple sites. The project has so far attracted several opera houses, opera education programs, technology labs and companies around the world, each involved in different ways.




Document Actions