Hello everyone! First of all, I’d like to thank all the people who attended our debut opera The Impresario and made it such a success. It was great to receive such a positive response from audience members, not only at the performances but through messages afterwards telling us how much you enjoyed the production. A lot has happened since then; we had a wonderful round of auditions for our next two operas, and we’re very excited that our Managing Director Robin Eder-Warren was recently named one of Richmond’s ‘Top 30 Under 30’ by the Richmond Review for her work with Opera Mariposa.
I’m delighted to announce our next performance: a special concert event on May 12th, just in time for Mother’s Day! The Singer will be a gala fundraiser in honour of the International Awareness Day for Myalgic Encephalomyelitis/Chronic Fatigue Syndrome & Fibromyalgia, and 100% of ticket sales will go to the BC Women’s Hospital Foundation in support of the Complex Chronic Disease Program. Alongside Robin Eder-Warren, tenor Zeus Ghadban and pianist Angus Kellett, I will be presenting some of my favourite opera and Broadway songs, including everything from classics by Mozart and Puccini to songs from hit shows like Sweeney Todd and Wicked. The evening will include a small reception and a prize raffle; you can read the full concert details here.
This cause is very close to my heart, because I’ve lived with Myalgic Encephalomyelitis (also known as Chronic Fatigue Syndrome) since the age of six. ME/CFS affects more than twenty-eight million people worldwide, and studies report it can cause disabilities in daily life comparable to late-stage AIDS or lupus and more severe than diabetes, multiple sclerosis or congestive heart failure. Best known for causing crushing fatigue unrelieved by sleep, the disease affects all body systems and can cause symptoms ranging from cardiac, respiratory and digestive problems to intermittent dyslexia and short-term memory loss. Fibromyalgia is a related illness which shares several traits with ME/CFS, though it is particularly characterized by chronic, widespread pain.
The newly opened Complex Chronic Disease Program assists people living with illnesses such as CFS/ME and FM. In addition to providing treatment and care, the program includes a strong research component, supporting clinicians and researchers in their pursuit of causes, diagnosis and potential treatments. Every cent of the proceeds from The Singer will go towards the program, so I hope you’ll join me in supporting a great cause by coming out for a night of beautiful music!
Looking ahead, we have several other fantastic shows in store: on June 28, 29 and 30, we will be presenting Pergolesi’s La serva padrona (The maid turned mistress) alongside a concert of Handel music, and this fall we’ll be bringing you a sassy, modern new take on Donizetti’s delightful opera Don Pasquale. In the meantime, you can reserve your tickets for The Singer here, and keep up to date on all the latest news by following us on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube. I look forward to seeing you in the audience on May 12th!