Design Observer Twenty Years 2003-2023

Jessica Helfand + Ellen McGirt | Audio

S9E5: Lucia Lucas

Lucia Lucas is a baritone who made her U.S. debut in 2019 at Tulsa Opera as Don Giovanni.

Lucas, who came out as trans without knowing whether she would be able to maintain her career, thinks that many more Americans would enjoy opera and has some thoughts about how to reach them:
Instead of trying to look broadly for audiences and how to appeal to everyone, I think that they would do well by looking at streaming services. Look at Netflix, look at Amazon Studios, look at Apple+, look at all of these independent studios making specialty projects that don‘t have to be for everyone. Your audience doesn‘t have to be the same audience that comes to every single show. But by doing that, you‘re going to get new audiences.

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If you enjoyed this conversation with Lucia, you might want to listen to Jessica’s and Ellen’s earlier conversation with Janelle Monáe

This season’s theme music is from Solar Echoes, by Nigel Stanford.

And a big thanks to this season’s sponsor, Mailchimp.

Lucia Lucas headshot by Josh New.

Posted in: Arts + Culture, Design of Business | Business of Design

Jessica Helfand + Ellen McGirt Jessica Helfand, a founding editor of Design Observer, is an award-winning graphic designer and writer. A former contributing editor and columnist for Print, Eye and Communications Arts magazine, she is a member of Alliance Graphique Internationale and a recent laureate of the Art Director’s Hall of Fame. Jessica received both her BA and MFA from Yale University where she has taught since 1994. In 2013, she won the AIGA medal.

Jessica Helfand + Ellen McGirt Award-winning journalist Ellen McGirt covers race, culture, and leadership in a daily column for Fortune entitled RaceAhead. Her reporting has taken her inside the C-suites of companies including Facebook, Nike, Twitter, Intel, Xerox, and Cisco; on the campaign trail with Barak Obama; and across Africa with Bono to study breakthrough philanthropy.

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