Opera First Timers

Campaign objectives

Opera Australia wanted to encourage newcomers to trial opera for the first time. They also wanted to drive consideration of opera as a great night out – or a great gift to give.

Opera Australia wanted to reach people who would be likely to fall in love with the art form – those that are already interested in arts, culture and cinema, but maybe haven’t considered opera before.

They wanted to shatter the myth that opera is intimidating or boring, and show a younger audience that contemporary opera is accessible and exciting.

The idea

Opera First Timers was based on a successful piece of written editorial Time Out had previously created. In the original feature, Time Out profiled recipients of the Wakil Ballot, who were attending the opera for the first time.

Opera Australia approached Time Out to revisit this project on a wider scale; creating a piece of video content that would appeal to Time Out’s young, urban and culturally curious audience.

This time, Time Out selected our own Opera First Timers. We chose four creative, talented young people, from different cities, with different skills; comedian Kyran Wheatley, style blogger Marilee Pham and musicians Ali Barter and Wafia Al-Rikabi. Then we invited them out to a night at the opera and filmed the results. Time Out only approached people we admire, and regularly feature, to be in the video. Each of the First Timers who came along had a different level of contact with the opera: Kyran’s grandmother was an opera singer, Ali had once appeared in an opera (but had never seen one), while Wafia and Marilee were complete newbies.

Anyway, here’s the video…

Platforms activated

Time Out website
Video live on the Time Out site, with accompanying copy and give away

Video hosted on Facebook with targeted paid promotion to extend reach

Content distributed through Time Out’s YouTube Channel

Time Out newsletter
Drivers to video placed in Time Out's weekly newsletters

Video promoted on Instagram with paid promotion

The results


video views


newsletters sent


Average Session Duration

Time Out says...

Time Out’s mission is always to inspire people to get the most out of their city. Central to that mission is encouraging our audience to engage more deeply with arts and culture. Convincing people to try something new – especially something as creatively rich as opera – was a perfect fit for us.

We wanted to bust myths and show people how much fun this sometimes misunderstood art form can be. We’re passionate advocates for the opera, and we wanted to take our readers on a journey to explain why. We’re forever grateful to Opera Australia for enabling us to make that happen – for their good grace and good humour.
We’re also excited that the video gave us a chance to work with and highlight young Australians whose work and talent we believe in.

When it comes to culture, a rising tide lifts all boats. From all angles, we feel like this project raised the water levels.