Benefit + Awareness

YouTube video thumbnail of Chinese-Canadian performer Jacqueline Ko with downcast eyes, holding a red rose against an artistic purple background. Cursive text reads, Chi il bel sogno di Doretta.

A new music video

Join Opera Mariposa for Chi il bel sogno di Doretta, directed by and starring soprano Jacqueline Ko and featuring pianist Maria Hwa Yeong Jung! Don’t miss this all-new music video in honour of Opera Mariposa’s 10th annual Benefit + Awareness event.

Access: Closed captioning available. Lyrics, English translation, and content warnings in video description

Raising voices in support of charity

Join us for our next event May 1-June 1, 2023!

Ever since Opera Mariposa’s inception, we’ve held an annual Benefit + Awareness event in May to raise funds and awareness for chronic neuro-immune diseases. So far we’ve raised over $116,000 for this cause – and brought you concerts and revue shows, studio singles, music videos, prize giveaways, online artist showcases and more!

This year, we’re once again bringing you an all-online charity extravaganza with 100% of the proceeds benefit the ME | FM Society of BC. Stay tuned for more details, coming soon (or sign up for the Mariposa newsletter). In the meantime, check out some of the music, videos and merch from past events – as well as media coverage from The Peak, BC Disability, Broadway World and Stir Vancouver, and a special Mariposa radio episode in honour of last year’s Global Accessibility Awareness Day!

Download a PDF about the charitable cause here.

What is the ME | FM Society of BC?
The ME | FM Society of BC is a registered Canadian charity working to support and advocate for people living with Myalgic Encephalomyelitis (ME) and/or Fibromyalgia (FM). They work to educate the healthcare community, government about ME and FM; provide information and resources for patients and their families; champion issues that impact the ME and FM community; and promote state-of-the-art medical research, testing, diagnosis and treatments. They are also dedicated to building an inclusive, accessible organization that creates opportunities for the participation of patients, carers and family members at every level. |

What is Myalgic Encephalomyelitis?

Myalgic Encephalomyelitis (ME)* is a complex chronic disease characterized by debilitating exhaustion unrelieved by sleep, as well as exacerbations or “flares” of its many symptoms after even minor physical or mental activity. Impacting many body systems, ME can cause everything from chronic pain, cardiac issues and immune problems to neurological symptoms like movement disorders, light sensitivity and intermittent dyslexia. “Mild” ME typically reduces function by at least 50%, while studies report that moderate to severe cases can resemble living with heart failure or end-stage cancer for decades. It has the lowest quality-of-life score of all common diseases, and prior to the pandemic, affected over half a million Canadians and an estimated 17-24 million people worldwide. Despite this, ME is seldom taught in medical schools, and an estimated 90% of patients aren’t even diagnosed. Many cases have a post-viral onset, and the illness can be triggered by coronaviruses such as SARS, MERS…and unfortunately, COVID-19. | learn more

*also referred to as ME/CFS, Chronic Fatigue Syndrome or SEID

What is Fibromyalgia?
Fibromyalgia (FM) is a complex chronic illness that affects over half a million Canadians and around 3-6% of people worldwide. Characterized by widespread burning pain and fatigue unrelieved by sleep, it can also cause other debilitating symptoms including brain fog, irregular heartbeat, severe sleep problems and digestive issues. As with ME, symptoms can vary not just from person to person but from day to day, and some patients may even appear superficially healthy. Nevertheless, fibromyalgic pain can be unrelenting, and the UK’s National Health Service ranks it as one of the 20 most painful health conditions. The illness is also associated with impaired joints, fascia and other connective tissues – an issue shared with Ehlers-Danlos syndrome (EDS), a genetic disorder with which it can co-occur. In fact, fibromyalgia can occur alongside several other serious conditions, including irritable bowel syndromemigraines and autoimmune diseases, and the overlapping symptoms can affect every aspect of a person’s daily life. | learn more

Opera & Chronic Illness: Let’s Chat ME/CFS

For our 2021 Benefit + Awareness event, our co-founders Jacqueline Ko and Robin Hahn sat down to talk opera and chronic illness. In this interview video, Jacqueline opened up about what it’s like being a singer with ME/CFS, and her journey as an artist living with a chronic neuro-immune disease. Check out the video Opera & Chronic Illness: Let’s chat ME/CFS.

Access: Closed captioning available; time stamps in video description. Content warning: references to medical symptoms, ableism, disability grief

YouTube video thumbnail featuring Opera Mariposa co-founders Robin Hahn and Jacqueline Ko, with the words Chronic Illness - let's chat!

Thank you to our event sponsors

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