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Ausrine Stundyte as Cio-Cio-San, Elizabeth Janes as Butterfly’s child and Sarah Larsen as Suzuki in Seattle Opera's production of Puccini's Madama Butterfly. Photo by Elise Bakketun.

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The epic story of Aida by Giuseppe Verdi is the backdrop for exploring one of the world’s great art forms. Music! Words! Opera! Featuring Aida is the second volume in the series that brings opera to life as an art form that can be understood and enjoyed by everyone. Music! Words! Opera! Featuring Aida includes complete lesson plans, an opera outline, activities, handouts, study questions, assessment tools, a glossary and a DVD recording of a classic performance from the Metropolitan Opera, conducted by James Levine with a cast including Aprile Millo and Plácido Domingo.

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Additional resources to enhance your learning.

OPERA America’s Learning Center
Study Guides
Find games, activities, lesson plans and more in the following study guides.

Edmonton Opera (2012 PDF)
Edmonton Opera provides a modern twist on its activities ranging from Facebook character development to Improv Reader’s Theatre to bring Aida to life.
Virginia Opera (2011-2012)
This study guide includes a detailed historical background on the opera and composer Giuseppe Verdi. Additionally, there are discussion questions that call upon older students to think critically about the music and themes of Aida.
Fort Worth Opera (2000 PDF)
This study guide provides an insight into Egyptian history with its activities and photographs, as well as a history of the opera.
Calgary Opera (2000 PDF)
Calgary Opera’s study guide delves extensively into Egyptian culture providing information about Egyptian history, Egyptian gods, hieroglyphics, the afterlife and modern-day Egypt. A pronunciation guide is also included.
Opera Philadelphia (1995 PDF)
This study guide offers critical thinking exercises encouraging students to review passages and form an opinion. It also includes information on Egyptian and European history. Activities include pyramid maps, Isis and Egyptian women, Egyptian dynasties and archaeology. Exercises about European history include the Italian unification and imperialism.

Teacher’s Guide
Find additional resources and curriculum connections in the teacher’s guide.

Excerpt from San Diego Opera Teacher's Sourcebook (2001)
The Teacher’s Sourcebook includes vivid illustrations and detail regarding the creation of the opera Aida and its connection to Egyptian history.

Bring your learning experience of Aida to life with video.

San Diego Opera Kidz Vidz: Aida - (San Diego Opera, 2013)

Dr. Nic Reveles explores Aida in this video produced by San Diego Opera's Education program. This video study guide is geared towards students in grades 3-12.
Zanda Rhodes Interview on Aida - (San Francisco Opera, 2010)

An interview with the creative and colorful production designer of San Francisco Opera’s Aida, Zandra Rhodes.
Renée Fleming and Sir Andrew Davis Discuss Aida - (Lyric Opera of Chicago, 2012)

Renée Fleming and Sir Andrew Davis discuss one of the grandest of grand operas, Aida.

Verdi: Aida (complete opera live 1951)
With Maria Callas, Mario del Monaco, Carlos Sagarminaga, Giuseppe Taddei and Oliviero de Fabritis. Orchestra & Chorus of del Palacio de Bellas Artes, Mexico City. EMI Classics (2003).

Verdi – Aida / L. Price • Vickers • Merrill • Gorr • Opera di Roma • Solti
With Leontyne Price, Jon Vickers, and Sir Georg Solti. Orchestra e Coro del Teatro dell'Opera di Roma. Decca (1990).

Verdi: Aida
With Bonaldo Giaiotti, Birgit Nilsson and Zubin Mehta. Orchestra del Teatro Reale dell'Opera di Roma. EMI Classics (2006).

Aida by Giuseppe Verdi
With Montserrat Caballé, Plácido Domingo, Fiorenza Cossotto and the New Philharmonia Orchestra, conducted by Ricardo Muti. EMI Classics (2001).

Aida by Giuseppe Verdi
With Maria Dragoni, Kristjan Johannsson, Barbara Dever, Mark Rucker and the National Symphony Orchestra of Ireland, conducted by Rico Saccani. Naxos (1995).

Recommended DVDs
Verdi – Aida
With James Levine, Plácido Domingo, Dolora Zajick, Sherrill Milnes, Aprile Millo and Paata Burchuladze. Metropolitan Opera. Deutsche Grammophon (2000).

Verdi – Aida
With Margaret Price, Luciano Pavarotti, Stefania Toczyska, Simon Estes, Kurt Rydl and Sam Wanamaker. San Francisco Opera . Kultur Video (2004).

Recommended Reading
Aida: Full Score (Ricordi Opera Full Scores)
By Giuseppe Verdi (Paperback –2001)

By Leontyne Price and Leo & Diane Dillon (Paperback – Oct 15, 1997)

Verdi With a Vengeance: An Energetic Guide to the Life and Complete Works of the King of Opera
By William Berger (Paperback –2000)

The New Grove Masters of Italian Opera: Rossini, Donizetti, Bellini, Verdi, Puccini
By Philip Gossett et al. (Hardcover- 1997)

The Complete Operas of Verdi
By Charles Osborne (Paperback- 1991)

Fall 2014 Magazine Issue
  • Are Women Different?
  • Preparing for Klinghoffer
  • Emerging Artists: Act One

Contact Us
330 Seventh Avenue, New York, NY 10001
P 212-796-8620 • F 212-796-8621
From Airport:
The easiest way to reach the OPERA America offices is to get a cab at the airport. Cost is $40-45
(not including tip).
  • JFK - Take the AirTrain ($5 - approx. 15 minutes) to the Jamaica Street Station and transfer to the Long Island Railroad (LIRR). Take the LIRR to Penn Station ($12 - approx. 35 minutes). See Penn Station directions below.
  • LaGuardia - Take the M60 Bus to the Hoyt Ave/31st Street. Get on the or Train and take that to 42nd/Times Square Station. Follow the Times Square Station directions below.
  • Newark - Take the New Jersey Transit train to Penn Station ($15 - approx. 45 min). See the Penn Station Directions below.

From Penn Station/Madison Square Garden:
Leave the station through the 7th Avenue/33rd Street exit and walk south for four blocks. The building is on
the right hand side.

From Grand Central Station:
Take the Train to the 42nd/Times Square station and transfer to the Train.
Take the Train to the 28th Street stop and walk north on 7th Avenue.
The building is on the same block as the train stop.

From 42nd Street/Times Square:
Take the Train to the 28th Street stop and walk north on 7th Avenue.
The building is on the same block as the train stop.

For more detailed directions, most up-to-date pricing or to specify a different starting location, please visit the
MTA Web site.