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The Difference between Musical Theatre and an Opera


A musical theatre and an opera may appear to be very similar. But in fact, they have their respective differences. The differences are often overlooked as they do not seem to be that much. There seem to be a similarity as both of them have a large selection of music which is played in sequence. Also, both of them are not just ensembles of simply music alone. They also have individuals speaking out words in between. This makes most of the themes of the two very alike. This makes it difficult for people to pick out the differences between the two of them.

Musical Theatre Explained

The very first difference between a musical theatre and an opera lies in the emotional aspect. The musical theatre in fact, has a much more emotional experience than an opera. Musical theatre makes sure the audience will be involved in the act. And also in the expression of music just as much as the performers are involved. Musical theatre portrays a story and performers make it sure that the viewers are able to understand and go along with the flow. There is so much to it and it has a lot of depth towards it.

Musical theatre is a much more dramatic form of expression of music. It also aids in people’s understanding what the music is about and where it originated from. It also depicts what story the instruments and lyrics tell. The musical theatre is basically an act that is put together for the entertainment of those who enjoy watching it. It showcases a certain theme, a lot of time and colour. Also, symbolism is used to help tell the story. For instance, red is used to signify anger and if the music is very angry it evolved from that mood.

An Opera Explained

On the other hand, an opera is a little different. It’s more dramatic and has a lot more expressions than the musical theatre. It usually has a classical theme and sticks to that particular theme throughout the entire play. It does not experiment around with different themes and moods. It is created and put together for a very specific style of audience. It is not altered around to approach more viewers. Instead, it is made better to please the existing audience. Often times, an opera will also have choreographed dances that go hand in hand with their music. They also tend to take breaks. They talk about their music in a creative manner engaging the audience into their performance.

Overall, both forms have their separate techniques for illustrating the art of music. Although, a lot of their techniques run parallel to each, but there are also some aspects where the two differ. Both are widely liked by people all over the world. This is because of the amazing and unique ways they showcase the art of music. Opera is more focused on showcasing natural talent and the voice talent alone. On the other hand, in a musical theatre performers bring microphones and project their voices through these devices.