The National Opera of Paris and Huawei France Announce New Online Platform: the Digital Academy

Jul 17, 2017 - Paris, France

The National Opera of Paris and Huawei France announced the foundation of the Digital Academy today, a unique online platform that marries digital technology, art, and education.

The Digital Academy has three main objectives:
  • Promote the arts by providing a free online platform that takes performances and other art-related resources out of the Opera's archives and makes them openly available to the outside world.
  • Support training through Massive Open Online Courses (MOOC) on wide range of art-related topics, including general art knowledge, techniques, and artistic practices.
  • Facilitate sharing by providing more accessible, interactive digital content.

“We are honored to work with the National Opera of Paris to build the Digital Academy, where we can jointly explore the interaction between digital technology and art,” said Ken Hu, Huawei's Deputy Chairman and Rotating CEO. “The National Opera of Paris has brought opera, ballet, and music to local audiences for over 300 years. With the help of digital technology, we're looking forward to an exciting future – a world where the Opera's work in both art and education is more open and available to everyone.”

From left to right: Zhai Jun, Chinese ambassador in France, Myriam Mazouzi, Academy Director of the National Opera of Paris and Ken Hu, Huawei's Deputy Chairman and Rotating CEO

For generations, young artists have looked to the National Opera of Paris as a source of creative inspiration. The Opera is well respected around the world, and has recently been noted for its strides in the digitization of art and art culture. In 2015, as part of an ongoing effort to make art more accessible to the public, the National Opera of Paris released what it calls the "Third Stage" – a third "theatre" in the digital world, featuring original works of performing arts, visual art, and film. Today’s formation of the Digital Academy is the next step in the Opera's digital transformation journey.

“The formation of the Digital Academy is a major step for us, enabling the opera to be far more open than ever before," said Myriam Mazouzi, Academy Director of the National Opera of Paris. "For the first time, the public, scientists, young entrepreneurs and teachers will all have access to a fantastic array of curated art and educational content on art. Going digital is an expression of our openness as an institution, both in France and around the globe."

Huawei itself is no stranger to the art world, especially photography. The company’s growing role in the arts recently gained recognition at the Rencontres d’Arles photography festival, where it hosted a gallery of portraits taken by renowned portraitist Billy Hidd with the Huawei P10 Plus smart phone. The company is also making a name for itself in the design world with its Global Aesthetics Research Center, which opened in Paris in 2015. With further plans to set up an OpenLab in Paris, designed to facilitate joint innovation with local French enterprises, and ongoing investment in the cultivation of young digital talent in France, Huawei is working hard to help France succeed in the digital transformation of industry, education, and the arts. Five years ago, Huawei became a member of the “The Friends of the Opera" association, and today is a proud founding-sponsor of the Digital Academy.