Fall Membership Luncheon

by Admin on December 4, 2020

Program and Luncheon on the upstairs verananda of the Coral Ridge Yacht Club, masked and socially distanced

Membership Luncheon features Mitch Roe, Director of Artistic Administration, Florida Grand Opera and Florida Grand Opera Studio Artists

Fort Lauderdale, FL, November 19, 2020 – The Opera Society welcomed former and new members to our Season opening event, our Membership Luncheon, held at the Coral Ridge Yacht Club on the beautiful open-air Veranda. We also welcomed Florida Grand Opera’s Director of Artistic Administration, Mitch Roe, and sensational Studio Artists, Shaina Martinez and Stephanie Doche. He gave an informative account of opera’s evolutionary history from the Classical Period through the Romantic bel canto Period to the Verismo Period, with the Studio Artists singing examples of each historic era. These stunning performances left the audience yearning for more.  

Board member, Dr. Linda Balent presented the opportunity to support Florida Grand Opera’s Education Program. This year will showcase the world premiere of a children’s opera about the power of friendship, Frida Kahlo and The Bravest Girl in the World. It will be presented in Broward and Miami-Dade County schools digitally for grades 4-8. 

KayeLynne Northcutt, on behalf of the Opera Society Board, presented Past President Jan Solomon with a stunning wide-brimmed elegant hat to recognize her service for the past two years at the helm of The Opera Society.  

A delicious lunch was served following the performances. 

Members of the Florida Grand Opera Board, Dr. Linda Balent and Himanshu Bhatt also attended.

We were also joined by several members on Zoom for the Welcome and performances, including Melanie Camp, Barry Rabinowitz, President Isobel Sturgeon, Carol Frei, Liz Hopwood, and Barbara Becker.

The afternoon was enjoyed by all and we appreciated the opportunity to see each other in person and on Zoom, and share our love of opera. 

For information please see our website, theoperasociety.org or contact [email protected]

The Opera Society is an affiliate organization of Florida Grand Opera.

Claire Crawford, Vice President Ways and Means, and KayeLynne Northcutt, Board member, presenting to Immediate Past President Jan Solomon a token of appreciation, from her Board of Directors, for her service as President for two terms.
KayeLynne Northcutt, Jan Solomon and her gift, a new hat!
Jan models her gift and thanks her Board and members of The Opera Society!
Shaina Martinez, soprano, performed “Piangete voi… Al dolce guidami” from Anna Bolena and “Quai fiamma aver nel guardo!..Stridono lassù” from I Pagliacci
Stephanie Doche, mezzo soprano, performed “Sequidilla” from Carmen and
“Sein wir wieder gut” from Ariadne auf Naxos

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The FGO Studio Artists in Fort Lauderdale

by Admin on November 27, 2020

Michael Miller, baritone, as Figaro from Rossini’s Il Barbiere di Siviglia

On Sunday November 8, 2020, Songfest was cancelled due to inclement weather. However, on November 15, we were able to enjoy the talent and skill of our Studio Artists at a Songfest featuring 20th and 21st Century Opera and Musical Theatre at the beautiful chapel of the Coral Ridge Presbyterian Church. On November 22, at the same venue, they thrilled the masked and socially-distanced audience in a sold-out performance of Opera’s Greatest Hits!

If you haven’t heard them yet, there will be a Holiday Pops Concert on Saturday, December 5 at 7:30 PM at the Doral Center (see www.fgo.org for more information) or an Opera At the Beach Concert on December 3 in Fort Lauderdale (see this website for information).

Enjoy the beautiful photos!

Michael Miller ” Largo al factotum” from Il barbiere di Siviglia
Stephanie Doche and Michael Miller “Dunque io son” from Il Barbiere di Siviglia”
Stephanie Doche sings “Habanera” form Carmen
Shaina Martinez and Dylan Elza ” Suzel, buon di ( Duetto della Ciliega)” from L’amico Fritza”
Andrew Simpson, “Vecchia zimarra senti” from La Boheme.
The only aria written by Puccini for a bass.
Dyaln Elza and Michael Miller, “In un coupe?… O Mimi, tu piu non torni” from La Boheme
Shaina Martinez and Andrew Simpson “La ci darem la mano” from Don Giovanni
Dylan Elza, ” La donna e mobile?” from Rigoletto
Stephanie Doche, Dylan Elza, Shaina Martinez, Andrew Simpson, “Un di, se ben rammentomi” from Verdi’s Rigoletto
Michael Miller and Andrew Simpson singing Rossini’s “Duetto buffo di due gatti”
Stephanie Doche and…
All Studio Artists singing “Libiamo ne’lieti calci” from La Triviata

BRAVI TUTTI !!!

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Pledges for the 2020-21 Education Program

by Admin on November 24, 2020

Frida Kahla and the Bravest Girl in the World by Laurence Anholt

Every year since 2007, THE OPERA SOCIETY has supported children’s operas in Broward county schools. As you know, we do this as part of our community outreach. We have raised the funds to cover any costs associated with these productions so that there was no charge to the schools.

This year, FGO is presenting “Frida and the Bravest Girl in the World”, a children’s opera by Joe Illick based on the highly acclaimed book by Laurence Anholt. It describes the real-life friendship of Marianna Morillo Safa with famed artist Frida Kahlo. This opera will be presented DIGITALLY to grades 4-8 in Dade and Broward schools.

More information about the production can be found here.

I am asking you to be generous again and to give to support this program. Funds from us will help to cover some of the costs of this production: recording studio, costumes, set, artists, etc. Our goal is to raise $3500.

Our President has generously made a pledge to match gifts up to $1750. Please see the form below so that you can all make a pledge to support this important program!

Thank you in advance.

Linda Balent

Education Program 2020-2021 Pledges

After you click on "Submit" you can use a credit or debit card or PayPal.

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On Saturday, November 14, 2020, our talented Studio Artists performed a beautiful program of beloved arias. Accompanied by Caren Levine and Jared Peroune, they thrilled the sold-out audience at the Doral Center. Don’t miss this program when they perform it in Fort Lauderdale on Sunday November 22 at the Coral Ridge Presbyterian Church!

Michael Miller “Largo al factotum” from Il Barbiere di Siviglia”
Stephanie Doche and Michael Miller, “Dunque io son” from Il Barbiere di Siviglia
Dylan Elza and Michael Miller “Au fond du temple saint” from Les Pecheurs de Perles
Shaina Martinez and Andrew Simpson, “La ci darem la mano” from Don Giovanni
Stephanie Doche, Andrew Simpson, Shaina Martinez, “Soave sia el vento” from Cosi Fan Tutti
Stephanie Doche, Dylan Elza, Shaina Martinez, Andrew Simpson,
“Un di, se ben rammentomi” from Rigoletto
Michael Miller and Andrew Simpson singing Rossini’s “Duetto buffo di due gatti”
All the Studio Artists: “Libiamo ne’lieti calici” from La Triviata

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Opera on the Beach

by Admin on November 9, 2020

Date: Dec. 3, 2020
Time: 3:00pm – 5:00pm
Location: Harbor Beach Surf Club
1500 S Ocean Dr (east end of Harbor Beach Parkway)
Fort Lauderdale, FL 33316
Price: $100pp
Dress: casual (swimming allowed)
Light refreshments (you may bring your own if you prefer)

Click here for map

Masks required over nose and mouth at all times. Singers will not perform unless all attendees are wearing masks and socially distanced at all times. Please see The Opera Society’s COVID-19 policy on the website (https://theoperasociety.org). No refunds for failing to wear a mask or socially distance from anyone outside your household.

Caution: there is a long wooden footbridge from the parking lot to the concert area on the beach that is not accessible by electric scooter, and may be a challenge to those using walkers.

December 2020 FGO Studio Artist Concert

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Studio Artists’ First Sing

by Admin on October 31, 2020

2020-21 Studio Artists: Dylan Elza, Stephanie Doche, Andrew Simpson, Michael Moore, and Shaina Martinez

On Saturday, October 24, 2020, 50 lucky opera lovers attended the sold-out First Sing of the 2020-21 Studio Artists! The artists were accompanied by their head coach, Caren Levine and coach, Jared Peroune. The program included favorites by Puccini (from La Rondine), Tchaikovsky (from Eugene Onegin), Bizet (from Carmen), Rossini ( from Il Barbiere di Siviglia and La Cenerentola), Verdi (form La Corsaro), Mozart (from Il Nozze di Figaro) and more. They performed spectacularly from behind the plastic screen shown above. The audience remained masked and socially distanced.

If you missed them, you still have opportunities to see them in concerts and Songfests here in Fort Lauderdale. Songfest recitals will take place on November 8, with the music of Victor Herbert, and November 15, with Opera and Musical Theatre, at the Coral Ridge Presbyterian Church, 5555 North Federal Hwy. A Concert of Opera’s Greatest Hits will take place on November 22 at the church also. So don’t miss them and don’t miss the joy of live musical performance!

Linda Balent, Secretary of the Board of Directors, with Studio Artist Soprano Shaina Martinez, and Susan Medina, member of the FGO Education Committee
Drs. Alvan and Linda Balent with Studio Artist, Andrew Simpson, Bass Baritone, whom they are sponsoring this season.

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Barbara’s Bistro and Wine Tasting

by Admin on October 26, 2020

On Thursday, October 22, eight lucky guests gathered at the lovely home of Barbara Copanos for a dinner and a Wine Tasting with Erich Theinert, Wine Master for PRP Wines! They also enjoyed a musical offering from FGO Studio Artists, Michael Moore, Baritone and Paul Schwartz, Pianist.

The menu included endive salad with Baltimore lump crab cake ( Barbara’s hometown), Filet of Beef with Oyster Soufflé and fruit tart. Each course paired with a magnificent wine, thanks to Erich our Wine Master. An elegant and delightful evening for all! Thank you to our hostess ! and her guests who generously donated the proceeds of this event to support Florida Grand Opera!

Barbara Copanos with her elegant appetizers!
Wine Master Eric Theinert at work
Dinner poolside!
Michael Moore, baritone, accompanied by Paul Schwartz.

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President’s Message 2020-21

by Admin on October 25, 2020

Dear Members,

Welcome to The Opera Society. The Opera Society is dedicated to building community through support of that pinnacle of performing arts, opera. Opera combines all the performing arts into one gorgeous production: symphony, ballet, and stories of Shakespearean depth. The Opera Society creates events to foster this community and to raise funds for Florida Grand Opera (FGO) which performs in Broward County as well as Miami-Dade.

Whether you are new to opera or a lifelong fan, this is the group for you. Newbies can learn from lifelong fans. And lifelong fans can relive their initial joys of discovering opera for the first time by sharing experiences with others.

During this pandemic the performing arts have been devastated. Artists are in desperate need. Performances of grand operas have been postponed and canceled around the country. Florida Grand Opera has also been badly affected. And although FGO has retained a few Studio Artists to create an opera film which to start an in school educational program to foster enthusiasm for opera in the next generation, staff has been slashed to the barest minimum. Those still employed are working longer hours at big pay cuts. They need our help now more than ever. Unfortunately the earliest a staged production by FGO could happen is spring 2021. With information about infection rates, testing techniques and efficacy, and vaccine availability and efficacy changing rapidly, so, too, could the date of a staged opera and its venue. 

Still The Opera Society will strive to create in-person and live events so we can meet and share our love of this art form.  News of events will be sent electronically so be sure you are allowing our emails and notices to get to you. You can update your email preferences at our website. We have already scheduled events for November and December. FGO is having concerts in Broward during those months as well. Other events are being planned for January, February and on into summer 2021. Stay tuned!

I welcome new ideas and input. I hope you will call me with any issues. My cell phone is listed in our directory. I would love to hear from you. I close with best wishes for all of you to stay healthy and to see you soon.

Sincerely yours,

Isobel Sturgeon

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Fall Membership Luncheon

by Admin on October 8, 2020

Date: Thursday, November 19, 2020
Time: 11:30am
Where: Coral Ridge Yacht Club, Upstairs Covered Veranda (outside)
Cost: $50/pp
Entree: Chicken or Salmon
Zoom option: $10 donation

Social-distanced seating is limited to 50 people
Please wear your mask into the building and until you are seated

Featuring: Mitch Roe, Director of Artistic Administration, FGO
FGO Studio Artists performing enchanting arias!

Fall 2020 Membership Luncheon
Attendance *
In support of The Opera Society and the continuation of live opera in our community

Food Selection *

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Opera is for Everyone!

by Admin on June 17, 2020

Linda Balent, Corresponding Secretary

Can you remember your 1st Opera??

I can because I was an Ophthalmology Resident at Boston University.  

Dr. Mohandas Kini, Head of the Retina Department, was an opera lover.  Every spring, he would bring all the residents to see The Metropolitan Opera when they performed in Boston.  It was Cavalleria Rusticana and I Pagliacci (Cav-Pag).  Many of the residents were unmoved but I was riveted.  I loved music and played an instrument throughout high school and was a singer in high school choruses and college choirs.  

I have had season tickets to the opera since I moved here in 1982 after residency. So now I sit in the audience and dream of having the vocal gifts that the FGO singers possess and share with us. 

Linda Balent

Corresponding Secretary

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