The quest for new digital skills for opera artists and opera companies during the COVID-19 pandemic
Sakhiseni Joseph Yende
The coronavirus 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic has emerged as a global phenomenon that is significantly affecting almost all sectors, irrespective of whether they have a well-established economic system or not. However, the brutality of the COVID-19 pandemic has been predominant in most sectors such as opera artists and became worst in many developing countries. Emerging countries like South Africa among others are at the receiving end of this. The COVID-19 pandemic has wreaked and exacerbated the existing vulnerability of opera artists, and this has become an issue of great concern. The difficulty in obtaining employment for opera artists and funding for performing arts organisations have caused seriously challenge opera artists to survive during the COVID-19 pandemic. This article is aimed to examine the quest for new digital skills for opera artists and opera companies during the COVID-19 pandemic. A qualitative research method was adopted utilising approaches interviews with opera singers (hereafter opera artists), selected retired opera practitioners and managers of opera companies. In this article, scholarly literally writings were also reviewed to yield trustworthy findings. The findings demonstrate that there is a high demand for opera artists to upgrade their skills to digital skills. This is partly attributable to the closed and suspension of live theatre performances in the present era. The paper concludes by affirming that digital skills are key skills in the opera industry for resuscitating the economy of the industry that is continuously changing during the COVID-19 pandemic.