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Press Released: 22 Sep 2012

OPERA America Announces National Opera Week 2011

October 28 – November 6, 2011

Fun, free activities to be presented by organizations nationwide

Nearly 100 opera companies, schools and organizations in 29 states across the nation will celebrate the third National Opera Week from October 28 – November 6, 2011 by offering free, accessible events to their communities. National Opera Week is coordinated by OPERA America, the national service organization for opera, with support of the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA).

National Opera Week celebrates the vibrancy of opera in America today and brings the inventiveness and excitement of opera to a national audience. The strength and diversity of established opera companies, community opera ensembles and opera training programs across the United States will be on display through free, dynamic activities designed to engage novices, opera lovers and everyone in between. National Opera Week activities include flash opera events, open houses, online activities, lecture/demonstrations and community performances.

Launching National Opera Week will be the NEA Opera Honors award ceremony on Thursday, October 27 at 7:30 p.m. in Washington, D.C. For the first time, this event will be available worldwide through a live webcast that also will be archived after the event and can be accessed at neaoperahonors.org. The NEA Opera Honors is the nation’s highest award in opera and recognizes outstanding artists for their lifetime achievements and contributions to the excellence and perpetuation of opera in America. This year’s honorees are stage designer John Conklin, general director Speight Jenkins, mezzo-soprano Risë Stevens and composer Robert Ward. The October 27 award ceremony and live webcast will feature video tributes, guest performances from artists such as tenor Lawrence Brownlee and mezzo-soprano Heather Johnson and an onstage conversation with the honorees. For additional information, visit neaoperahonors.org.

“From behind-the-scenes tours to enlightening performance talks to Twitter contests and more, there is something for everyone during National Opera Week,” states Marc A. Scorca, president & CEO of OPERA America. “National Opera Week draws attention to the creativity and dynamism that propels our field today. We are proud to highlight this depth of opera activity across the United States.”

Noteworthy National Opera Week events include a hands-on opera workshop for senior citizens by the University of Alabama, an opera scavenger hunt by Chicago Opera Theater and tours of the Utah Opera production studios.

For a full listing of National Opera Week activities, please visit www.operaamerica.org/operaweek. On Twitter, join @OperaAmerica in the National Opera Week conversation with #OperaWeek. On Facebook, visit www.facebook.com/nationaloperaweek.

Select Activities

Chicago Opera Theater (Chicago, IL)
Opera Scavenger Hunt: Chicago Opera Theater presents an Opera Scavenger Hunt using Scavenger with Friends. Participants will explore classical music and opera hot spots in Chicago, and win tickets and special discounts to COT.

The Dallas Opera (Dallas, TX)
Free TDO2go™ Performance: The Dallas Opera presents, in partnership with NorthPark Center and the SMU Vocal Program, a free performance of its Touring Opera, Doctor Miracle by Georges Bizet, sung in English. From the composer of Carmen, see the hilarious one-act opera about a young man’s quest to marry his true love, the mayor’s daughter. He must disguise himself as a servant who makes a “poison” omelet, and as a doctor who saves the family — all for the sake of true love. Will the happy couple get married?

OPERA America (New York, NY)
Inspired by Opera: The experience of attending the opera has touched people in different ways throughout their lives and OPERA America wants to hear how! During National Opera Week, OPERA America will collect personal stories from the public about their most memorable opera moments. Recollections involving the recipients of this year’s NEA Opera Honors are particularly welcome. The most inspiring examples will be posted to www.operaamerica.org/operaweek.

Sarasota Opera (Sarasota, FL)
First Friday Art Walk on Palm Avenue: During the First Friday Palm Avenue Art Walk, all the galleries and many of the shops along South Palm Avenue remain open late for shoppers and browsers. Many merchants offer light bites and complimentary wine tastings. Sarasota Opera singers will perform several short sets of opera arias and duets throughout the evening.

University of Alabama (Tuscaloosa, AL)
Opera Training for Everyone: The University of Alabama Opera Theatre will offer opera classes to residents of Capstone Village Retirement Community on the campus of the university. Participants who are normally in the audience will get a first-hand opportunity to experience the workshop training and skill sets which opera singers study to hone their craft as opera actors. Opera students and faculty will lead residents in mini-classes in improvisation, movement, acting, opera history and other topics, and the residents will serve as mock audition panelists.

Utah Symphony | Utah Opera (Salt Lake City, UT)
Utah Opera Production Studios Tour: The public is invited to go behind the scenes and see how costumes, sets and props for Utah Opera are created.

Activities in 29 States
District of Columbia
New Jersey
New York
North Carolina
North Dakota
South Carolina
89 National Opera Week Partners

972, the Cultural Services of the French Embassy

Academy of Vocal Arts

Amarillo Opera

American Lyric Theater

Ardea Arts

Arizona Opera

The Atlanta Opera

Austin Lyric Opera

Boston Lyric Opera

Boston Metro Opera

Center City Opera Theater

Central City Opera

Charleston Chamber Opera

Chicago Opera Theater

Cleveland Institute of Music

Connecticut Lyric Opera

Cornish College of the Arts

The Crane Opera Ensemble at SUNY - Potsdam

The Dallas Opera

Empire Opera, Inc.

Eugene Opera

Fargo-Moorhead Opera

Florentine Opera Company

Florida Grand Opera

French Institute / Alliance Francaise

Georgia Southern University

The Glimmerglass Festival

Golden Gate Opera

Houston Grand Opera

Juventas Music, Inc.

Knoxville Opera

Long Beach Opera

Los Angeles Opera

Louisiana State University Opera

Lyric Opera of Chicago

Madison Opera

Manhattan Opera Repertory Ensemble

Manhattan School of Music

The Metropolitan Opera

Michigan Opera Theatre

Minnesota Opera

Mobile Opera

Muddy River Opera Company

Nashville Opera

National Endowment for the Arts

New Orleans Opera Association

North Park UniversityOPERA America

Opera Birmingham

Opera Carolina

Opera Colorado

Opera Company of Philadelphia

Opera for the Young

Opera Idaho

Opera Lafayette

Opera Memphis

Opera New Jersey

Opera Omaha

Opera on the James

Opera Roanoke

Opera San José

Opera San Luis Obispo

Opera Santa Barbara

Opera Theater of Pittsburgh


Palm Beach Opera

Paul Sorvino

Pittsburgh Opera

Pocket Opera of NY

Portland Opera

Rice University - The Shepherd School of Music

San Diego Opera Association

Sarasota Opera

G. Schirmer, Inc./Associated Music Publishers

Shenandoah University Conservatory of Music

Shreveport Opera

South Shore Opera Company of Chicago

Syracuse Opera

Tri-Cities Opera Company

University of Alabama

University of Colorado, Boulder

University of South Carolina-Opera at USC

University of the Pacific

University of Utah Lyric Opera Ensemble

Utah Symphony | Utah Opera

Virginia Opera

Washington National Opera

Webster University


About the National Endowment for the Arts
The National Endowment for the Arts was established by Congress in 1965 as an independent agency of the federal government. To date, the NEA has awarded more than $4 billion to support artistic excellence, creativity, and innovation for the benefit of individuals and communities. The NEA extends its work through partnerships with state arts agencies, local leaders, other federal agencies, and the philanthropic sector. To join the discussion on how art works, visit the NEA at arts.gov.


For more information on OPERA America, visit About Us.

For press inquiries, contact Press@operaamerica.org or 212.796.8628.