Classical Music for Modern Audiences

We are a podcast + Youtube channel that explores the grey area between music school and a professional career. We’re here to discuss those important skills and topics that leave you wondering, “Wait, how the heck did I not learn about this earlier?” From audition season and recitals to fitness and finances, join us as we talk, joke, and complain about everything it takes to be a classical musician in a modern world.

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Hey there! We're Michelle and Jessie, two classically trained sopranos and the co-founders of Opera Offstage. In the summer of 2019, fresh out of our Master's programs, we realized that the classical music industry was suffering from some major issues. Even worse than that, nothing in our schooling had prepared us to tackle these problems.


Classical music has fallen behind much of the entertainment industry. Its growing reputation as a stuffy, expensive, and aging art form was stifling it and its online representation was likewise too formal and impersonal. Seriously, where on earth is all the fun content for classical musicians?


With that in mind, we set out to create a cross-platform community that caters to young musicians looking to innovate and reinvent their field.


Our mission is to create entertaining educational and practical resources for modern classical musicians. Whether we're bringing prominent guests onto the podcast or publishing eBooks aimed to build new skills, our goal is to empower young artists to feel more in control of their education and career. The fact is that there are many holes in music education, and we hope to help supplement those areas by sharing our own journey as well as the expertise of professionals in our field.


We believe in the power that comes with having a platform and are dedicated to using our influence to promote advocacy and inclusivity throughout our industry. We constantly explore the areas in which the classical music industry requires reform and tackle them head on in our Issues in Opera series.


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I'm a professional soprano and voice teacher based in Los Angeles.

I am a social media manager for different businesses and arts organizations across the nation.

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I’m a soprano and bartender from Nashville. My goal is to make opera and music education accessible to everyone.

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Em Esposito

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I am a classically trained soprano, mental health advocate, performing arts administrator, and avid meme enthusiast. I'm thrilled to be manning the inbox and more behind-the- scenes Opera Offstage. When not crafting or baking, I enjoy my little studio apartment in Chicago with my partner and baby (Meow Meow, obviously).


Camden McLean

she / her


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I’m a Chicago-based soprano, currently pursuing my Master’s in Performance at Roosevelt University. I’m a big fan of Cuban coffee, run-on sentences, and all things performance related. My goal is to become so zen that no PFO can touch me, and to write about opera in a modern context.


Preston Hereford

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I’m a tenor currently based in Kansas City, MO, where I have performed with several ensembles and Landlocked Opera Co. My interests include early music, obscure art song, Bach cantatas, listening to Cecilia Bartoli for 4 hours at a time, coffee, cats, and gin and tonics (among other things) - all of which I’m sure will make an appearance in the blog at some point in time! 

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Veronica Mak

she / her

audio editor

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I am a soprano, teacher, and avid learner based in NYC. I enjoy community service, running, and playing sudoku puzzles. My ultimate objective is to provide joy, hope, and opportunities to as many people through various works of art. 

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Buffy Adamski

she / her

content creator

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I am a soprano, designer, and photographer from Orlando, Florida. I have a passion for the arts, animals, Taylor Swift, and vegan food (especially desserts!). In my free time, I love to sing (of course), draw, read, play video games, and hang out with my friends and two dogs.