Opera Volunteers International Meets Grand Ole Opry

by Julie Benson on November 18, 2009

OVI Focus Meeting in Nashville

Nashville Opera Artistic Director John Hoomes with Julie Benson

Julie Benson with Nashville Opera Artistic Director John Hoomes

Many thanks to the Nashville Opera Guild (NOG) for hosting OVI’s 2009 Fall Focus: Opera Support Groups Cultivating Wider Audiences for the 21st Century and Beyond.

Tours highlighting the “Music City” were led by volunteer NOG Board Members, and sights included Bi-Centennial Mall, a full-scale reproduction of the Parthenon, historic Union Station, Tennessee State Capitol and Vanderbilt University. The Grand Ole Opry radio broadcast and performance in the 115-plus year old Ryman Auditorium was amazing.

In addition, the backstage tour of the impressive Noah Liff Opera Center was conducted by NOG volunteers including three informative educational sessions related to promoting and supporting opera.

Nashville Opera’s production of Philip Glass’s The Fall of the House of Usher based on Edgar Allen Poe’s masterpiece was a highlight. Special thanks to NOG President, Felicia Gates and OVI/NOG Board Member, Shelley Page for making the weekend so successful.

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Rhonda November 19, 2009 at 10:37 pm

Fantastic conference – looking forward to Chicago in April!

DavidY November 24, 2009 at 5:21 am

The soprano who sang the role of Madeline in The Fall of the House of Usher, was a former Young Artist at Florida Grand Opera in 2006-07. I videorecorded her recital that season and gave her the DVD of it.

Lee Gregory, who sang the role of William in the opera, is the husband of soprano Kelly Kaduce, who opened the Florida Grand Opera season that very same Saturday night as Nedda in Pagliacci and Suor Angelica in Suor Angelica!

8 Days after that performance, on Sunday, November 22, I just happened to sit next to Lee at a performance of Pagliacci and Suor Angelica!

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