‘Newfoundland Gets It’ aims to make opera accessible

Ray's new campaign for St. John's opera company aims for accessibility

Opera on the Avalon and St. John’s agency Ray have launched “Newfoundland Gets It,” a new campaign designed to squash stereotypes and raise awareness for the opera company.

Targeted to professionals aged 30-40, the campaign’s creative employs modern language and plays on universal themes such as death, love and betrayal to get the message across that opera is neither elite nor stuffy.

Taglines from ads promoting the company’s productions of A Midsummer Night’s Dream and La Boheme say, “Women falls in love with sweet ass. Just like any other night on George Street” and “Love, despair, poverty, intermission, illness, death.”

“To goal is to make opera not seem so scary,” said Cheryl Hickman, artistic director at Opera on the Avalon. “Especially in a market like St. John’s, which is a very musical market, people are not always used to this type of art. They’re a little afraid to see live opera because they’re afraid of translation or there won’t be anything they can understand, and we solve all those problems. It’s to let people understand that we’re here and accessible for all ages and all audiences.”

Elements of the integrated campaign include print, radio, outdoor, transit, and online ads, along with social media promotion. Both the media buy and PR are being handled in-house.

Hickman said this is Opera on the Avalon’s biggest marketing campaign to date and since the campaign launched last month, box office sales are up.

“Newfoundland Gets It” will run until June 16.

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