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Things may not be over 'till the fat lady sings, but for one British Web company, the sound of a warbling aria could be could be just the beginning. High-brow online impresario, Online Classics, has secured a number of exclusive agreements to broadcast opera, musicals, ballet, classical concerts and "quality" theatre on the Net in a move that should appeal to the Web's culture vultures. It's also signed agreements with some of the best known names in opera - sopranos Montserrat Caballe, Jessye Norman and Julia Migenes and tenor Tito Beltran - to broadcast their performances on the Web. The company acknowledges that its culturally lofty ambitions will only be realised once a suitably gutsy broadband service is available in Britain. Nonetheless, when the curtain goes up tomorrow and the site is open to the galleries for the first time, Online Classics plans to have five hours of pre-recorded concerts, opera and dance available with a further 100 hours coming online within the next few weeks. ®

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