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The mission of Opera Essentia is to curate one of history’s most transfixing artforms for a new, and wider, audience, performing in gardens, parks, and other accessible centers of community. We distill the largely unknown works of baroque master George Frideric Handel, arguably the most important composer for the voice, into approachable discoveries.


We bring opera “outside” – literally outdoors, but more importantly- liberated from classical music’s traditional venues. Contrasting opera’s usually expensive and exclusive productions, we offer ours free of charge in Alphabet City, Brooklyn’s Bed-Stuy, and other local neighborhoods which lack centers for the Arts. 


Delivered in a concise One Act experience, and performed by a diverse company of world-class musicians, we hope to amaze and delight new generations - with these rarely-performed works by the composer of The Messiah


Handel perfectly conveys character and emotion through deeply expressive writing for the human voice. Opera Essentia presents this vital music on visceral “gut string” instruments, weaving arias into an intimate sound chronicle- which all can enjoy.

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Our Team

Artistic Director: Jeffrey Mandelbaum

  Project Manager/Co-Director: Rod Gomez

                    Company Advisor: Hannah Arie-Gaifman

Executive Producer: Marty Jeiven

Artistic Administrator: Heather Bobeck

Graphic Designer: Katia Michalopoulos

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Advisory Council

                   Marty Jeiven             Hanna Arie-Gaifman


Linda Monssen [In Memoriam]                  Ann Mandelbaum                  Wiebke Moore

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