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President’s Message for 2019 – 2020 Season

by President on October 6, 2019

President Jan Solomon

Welcome to all new members and faithful members! I am honored to serve as your President for the 2019-2020 opera season. I have had the pleasure of volunteering for Florida Grand Opera since 1991, and look forward to a year of beautiful opera, meeting new friends, and strengthening The Opera Society and Florida Grand Opera.

Art enriches the human spirit, emboldens imagination, and enhances our lives. We are privileged to support Florida Grand Opera in its commitment to provide world class opera, present outreach programs for our community, and introduce children to opera.

Without you, we would not have experienced great success for 42 years in The Opera Society. Bravo! Last year we raised over $60,000 in support of Florida Grand Opera and our educational programs. A special thank you to our Board of Directors, our Officers, and our Event Chairs who make our events successful.

We start by welcoming you to our Fall Membership Luncheon on October 22nd. Our Lyrical Luncheon Series will begin November 14th and run through April, previewing each opera with a special guest speaker and performances by the Studio Artists of FGO. We are adding a new event this year, an elegant Holiday Party on Sunday, December 8th. Our Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner Series will delight your senses from September to April. A very special luncheon event will be held aboard Holland America’s Nieu Amsterdam on Saturday, March 14th. We will wrap up our season on Wednesday, May 6th with our Spring Installation Luncheon. Please save the dates!

Volunteer opportunities abound: assisting with our In-School Opera program, attending and bringing guests to Member Mixers, serving on the welcome committee of our exciting events, helping with our mailing and phone committees, sponsoring our events, and many more. Please let us know how you would like to participate.

Florida Grand Opera is producing a magnificent season this year! Please purchase your tickets early for the best seating. Mainstage operas include: Mozart’s Don Giovanni, Puccini’s Madama Butterfly, Verdi’s Rigoletto, and Cimarosa’s Il Matrimonio Segreto.

I look forward to sharing the beauty and passion of opera with you, and the friendships of The Opera Society.

With warm regards,

Jan Solomon


Register for the Fall 2019 Membership Luncheon

by President on October 5, 2019

Please register and pay for the Membership luncheon here. $50/person.

October 22, 2019 11:30am

Featuring FGO Studio Artists

Fall 2019 Membership Luncheon

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



Save for the dates for 2019-2020!

by President on September 30, 2019

Dear Members,

Announcing our exciting 2019-2020 season events – please SAVE THE DATES!!

You will be receiving invitations, flyers, mail, and emails with more details as we go through the season. Please mark these dates in your calendar.

You are welcome to email our President, Jan Solomon at [email protected] for more information.

Tuesday, October 22nd at 11:30am – Our Fall Membership Luncheon at the lovely home of Barbara Copanos. Don’t miss the Studio Artists, lunch and a preview of the upcoming Florida Grand Opera season. Welcome Back!!

Sunday December 8, 2019 at 4:30pm – A Holiday Party with concert by the Studio Artists, Sing-a-long, Dinner and Dancing at Coral Ridge Country Club.

Thursday, November 14, 2019 at 11:30am –  Lyrical Luncheon – Preview of Mozart’s Don Giovanni with FGO Studio Artists performing arias and duets from the opera. Lunch to follow. Coral Ridge Yacht Club.

Thursday, January 9, 2020 at 11:30am – Lyrical Luncheon – Preview of Puccini’s masterpiece Madama Butterfly. FGO Studio Artists will perform Arias and Duets from the Opera. Lunch to follow. Coral Ridge Yacht Club.

Wednesday, April 22, 2020 at 11:30am – Lyrical Luncheon – Preview of Verdi’s Rigoletto. FGO Studio Artists will perform Arias and Duets from the Opera. Lunch to follow. Coral Ridge Yacht Club.

Saturday March 14, 2020, 10-2pm. Luncheon and performances aboard Holland America Lines Nieu Amsterdam @ Port Everglades. Open to members and prospective new members. Wednesday, May 6 at 11:30am – Spring Installation Luncheon at Coral Ridge Country Club.

Songfests – FGO performances by Studio Artists, Artserve, Sunrise Blvd., Ft Lauderdale. Friday Nov 1, 2019 and Friday February 7, 2020 @ 7 pm. Open to the public.

Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner – Specialty Dinners in private homes. Contact Melanie Camp for information at [email protected]

2019-2020 FGO Opera Season:

Don Giovanni by Mozart – the story of the Greatest Lover of all time, Don Juan. [email protected] Arsht Center- November [email protected], November 19 & 21 @8pm; Ft Lauderdale @ Broward Center- 12/5 &12/7 @ 7:30 pm

Madama Butterfly by Puccini – one of the most famous and best loved Operas of all time. Miami @ Arsht Center – 1/18/20 @ 6pm, 1/21 & 1/23 @8pm, 1/26 @ 2 pm; Ft Lauderdale @ Broward Center – 1/30/20 @ 2/[email protected] 7:30 pm.

Rigoletto by Verdi – one of Verdi’s masterpieces. Miami @ Arsht Center – 3/28/20 @ 7pm, 3/31 & 4/2 @ 7:30pm,  4/5 @ 2pm; Ft Lauderdale @ Broward Center – 4/30/20 @7:30pm, 5/2 @ 7:30 pm.

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Spring Installation Luncheon

by President on April 18, 2019

May 1, 11:30am
Coral Ridge Country Club, 3801 Bayview Dr., Fort Lauderdale
Click here for map

The Installation of our Officers


President – Jan Solomon

Vice Presidents
  • Ways and Means – Claire Crawford
  • Membership – Karen Mathieson and Helena Caplan
  • Public Relations – Barry Rabinowitz

Corresponding Secretary – Linda Balent
Recording Secretary – Isobel Sturgeon
Treasurer – Ruth Molina

Featuring FGO Studio Artists performing enchanting arias

Click here for flyer.

Spring 2019 Installation Luncheon

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Member Mixer

by President on April 18, 2019

Tuesday, April 23 from 5-7pm

Casa Calabria, 4040 Galt Ocean Dr. in the Ocean Manor Hotel

$20 per person includes one drink and one of their amazing appetizers!

Click here for the map.

Bring new friends to introduce them to The Opera Society!

It’s the newest “the-place-to-be” in Fort Lauderdale!
Socialize with old and new friends in The Opera Society!

RSVP to Barry Rabinowitz 561 302-0993 or pay here.

Seating is limited, so sign up early!!

Click here for flyer

Spring 2019 Member Mixer

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



Delight in Love Gala, February 9th

by President on January 29, 2019

The Opera Society, will host Florida Grand Opera’s 78th Season Anniversary Gala on Saturday, February 9, 2019, at the Broward Center for the Performing Arts.

This enchanting black tie Gala will begin with a Prosecco Reception sponsored by Dall’Armellina Vineyards in the Abdo New River Room at 5:00 PM. Guests will enjoy having photo portraits while listening to the delightful music of The Elegant Harp, a harp duo.

This will be followed by a performance of Mozart’s The Marriage of Figaro at 6:00 PM in the Au-Rene Theater. “We look forward to everyone experiencing the sensational production of Le Nozze di Figaro, featuring an international cast, many of whom are returning, including some graduates of the FGO Studio making their debut in principal cast roles. What a wonderful way to celebrate our 78th Anniversary,” said Susan T. Danis, General Director and CEO.

After the opera, guests will enjoy dinner inspired by the opera, The Marriage of Figaro, in the Abdo New River Room, followed by dessert and dancing.


Cocktails with the Elegant Harp . . . . . . . . . . . Abdo New River Room
The Marriage of Figaro . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Au-Rene Theatre
Dinner . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Abdo New River Room
Welcome . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Susan T. Danis, General Director & CEO
Appreciation . . . . . . . . . Linda Balent & Jan Solomon, Gala Co-Chairs
Dancing . . . . . …. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . The Intracoastals


Nicoise salad of mixed greens, roasted potatoes, hard boiled eggs, hari coverts, roma tomatoes, capers and a mustard vinaigrette

Grilled Mahi-Mahi and Filet Mignon combination plate served with candied pineapple jasmine and chunky roasted root vegetables. Vegan meals available upon tableside request

Crème brûlée served with fresh raspberries & family-style platters of classic French pastries and petit fours

A Message from the Gala Chairs

“If only the whole world could feel the power of harmony.”

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

Thank you for joining us tonight in support of Florida Grand Opera, one of the oldest and most important cultural institutions in Florida, currently in its 78th season. Our lives are forever enriched through music and the arts.

Tonight we share our delight in music, opera and the complexities of
love, with Mozart’s The Marriage of Figaro. We hope you enjoy this memorable evening of music, dinner and dancing.

Dr. Linda Balent & Mrs. Jan Solomon

Contact us for more info

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Your Message

Thank You

Thank you to our supporters who made this beautiful evening possible. Your generosity is deeply appreciated.

Silver Sponsors

Mrs. Barbara Copanos
Drs. Alvan and Linda Balent
Mr. and Mrs. Stephen Pierce
Dall’Armellina Vineyards


Dr. Jacqueline Hayward
Ms. Susan Danis
Mr. and Mrs. Douglas Hodgson
Mr. and Mrs. Roger Sturgeon
Drs. Peter Johnson and Shirley Admin
Mr. and Mrs. Robert Werner


Ms. Beth Holland
Ms. Linda Smith
Mr. and Mrs. Jay Zukowski
Mrs. Helena Caplan
Dr. and Mrs. Amos Stoll
Mrs. Sally Robbins


The Amaturo Foundation
Mr. and Mrs. Roland Parent
Mr. and Mrs. David Treitel
Mr. and Mrs. Harold Solomon
Solomon International Solutions
Mrs. Joyce Walker
Mrs. Melanie Camp

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A Celebration of Robert Xavier Rodriguez’s Frida

by President on January 27, 2019

Frida Kahlo – An Anguished Brush” – 3 events

1 – Lecture with Art Historian, Armando Droulers

NSU Art Museum Auditorium, 1 E. Las Olas Blvd., Fort Lauderdale, FL 33301

Thursday, March 7, 2019 at 5:30, followed by a FREE night at the Museum.


2 – Interview with the Maestro, Robert Xavier Rodriguez

Moderated by Justin Moss, FGO Director of Broward Operations

ArtServe, 1350 E. Sunrise Blvd., Fort Lauderdale, FL 33304

Friday, March 15, 2019, 6:30pm


3 – Intimate Dinner with the Composer

Casa Frida, 5441 N. Federal Hwy, Fort Lauderdale, FL 33308

Tuesday, March 19, 2019 at 6:00pm – $50 per person

Seating is limited

Reserve online

Dinner with Composer Robert Xavier Rodriguez at Casa Frida

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Maestro Andrew Bisantz previewed Mozart’s The Marriage of Figaro at The Opera Society’s second of three Lyrical Luncheons on Thursday, January 24 at the Coral Ridge Yacht Club. His in-depth account of this memorable opera left the audience ready for the upcoming live performances.

FGO Studio Artists, Jessica E. Jones, Soprano, Evan Kardon, Soprano, and Rafael Porto, bass-baritone, performed stunning arias and duets from the opera, accompanied by our Chorus Master, pianist extraordinaire, Kathy Kozak.

“The Lyrical Luncheons are designed to educate and entertain while enhancing enjoyment of upcoming operas,” said Lyrical Luncheon Chair, Dr. Jan Solomon. “This was an enchanting afternoon of feast and song.” The cost is $65 per event.

The Marriage of Figaro will be performed at the Broward Center of Performing Arts, Thursday, February 7 and Saturday, February 9. FGO’s Annual Gala, hosted by The Opera Society, will take place before and after this Saturday performance. For more details about the event, please check out the post, Delight in Love Gala, February 9th.

The next Lyrical Luncheon will be February 20th previewing Robert Xavier Rodriguez’s Frida. For reservations and more information, please see our post, A Celebration of Robert Xavier Rodriguez’s Frida.


Betty Williams, David Voneida, Barbara Lefka, Barbara Copanos, Nancy Voneida
Cynthia Pritchard, Patsy West, and Bill Archer

Barbara Copanos, member of the Board of Directors of The Opera Society, hosted a beautiful poolside Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner at her home on January 19, 2019. She themed it “Creative Tuscan Dinner.”

Barbara Copanos, member of the Board of Directors of The Opera Society, hosted a beautiful Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner at her home on January 19, 2019. She themed it “Creative Tuscan Dinner.”

Her guests included David Voneida and Nancy Voneida, President of the Symphony of the Americas Society. Also, Barbara Lefka, Betty Williams, Jacqueline Hayward, Barbara and Roland Parent, Helena Caplan,
Dr. Claire Crawford, Bill Archer, Patsy West and Cynthia Pritchard. enjoyed the evening.

Barbara has been hosting Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner at her elegant home for several years. She has a special love of Italian cooking and she prepared a dinner with all her favorite dishes.

Barbara is a past President of The Opera Society and a member of the Board of Directors of Florida Grand Opera.


(l. to r.) Dr. Jacqueline Hayward, Diane Kohlmeyer, Gisela Gutmann
Melanie Camp, Chef Extraordinaire!

On Sunday, December 9, 2018, Melanie Camp hosted Diner L’Opera in her lovely home. Her guests were a Texas friend, Claire O’Malley, Jacqueline Hayward, Diane Kohlmeyer, Gisela Gutmann, Walter Nauyoks, Liz Hopwood, and Jan Solomon.

Guests were served welcome champagne, salmon mousse and artichaut a la poste. Followed by zucchini bisque, bifteck au poivre, haricots verts, and pommes de terre. Mousse au chocolate was the finishing touch.

Complementing wines were Pouilly fusse and Chateauneuf du Pape.
Melanie was taught by Jacques Pepin, Anna Muffoletto, Diane Wilkinson, Perla Meyer, Jean Pierre and James Beard. Her favorite cookbook author is Craig Clayborne. Her favorite chef is Julia Child. All the recipes for Diner L’Opera are in the Libretto Cookbook, a project Melanie chaired from 1985 until it was published in 1987.