Saturday, April 17, 2010

Company Profile: Opera Kitchener

We have another profile done by one of the country's growing companies: Opera Kitchener. OK grew out of a combination of events: Opera Ontario pulled out of the region just before the Artistic Director of Brampton Lyric Opera moved to the region. Seeing a gap and an audience looking for opera, their new Artistic Director jumped right in and created Opera Kitchener and today he has graciously agreed to complete a profile for us.

Opera Kitchener
Location served
: Kitchener / Waterloo Region
Number of productions/year: 2 - 3 Main Stage ( 1 - 3 free summer outdoor operas included )
2009/2010 season's operas: Jan 09 - Marriage of Figaro
Feb 09 - La Traviata
Mar 09 - Richard Margison in Concert
June 09 - Cinderella ( free outdoor )
July 09 - Hansel & Gretel ( free outdoor )
Aug 09 - The Magic Flute ( free outdoor )
Oct 09 - Cosi fan tutte
Jan 10 - Die Fledermaus
Mar 10 - Madama Butterfly

2010/2011 season's operas: July 10 - Cosi fan tutte ( free outdoor )
Nov 10 - La Boheme
Apr 11 - The Barber of Seville
Approximate annual (or per-production - please specify) budget. I know that it varies, but try to guess: $80K - $100K (Annually)
Rehearsal period length and frequency:4 rehearsals a week for 4 weeks. Rehearsals are usually 3 hours long.
Are rehearsals generally evenings or days? Nights during the week and anytime during the weekend. We also rehearse during the day on weekdays if the artists are available.
Number of performances per production: 2 - 3
Performance venue(s) and size:Centre in the Square - Kitchener
Waterloo Public Square - Waterloo - ( outdoor only )
Humanities Theatre - Waterloo
River Run Centre - Guelph
Rose Theatre - Brampton
Living Arts Centre - Mississauga
What are your ticket price ranges? $25 - $55 depending on venue
Typically, are your productions with orchestra, piano, or small instrument ensemble with piano?Staged with soloists, costumes, chorus and orchestra
Are your roles paid? Lead roles? Secondary? Small roles? Chorus?Leads are paid an honourarium and the chorus was paid in 2009 for the first time.
If your roles are paid,what is the typical fee range for a lead role? All compensation depends on funding and sponsorship.
Do you have a relationship with Actor's Equity/Union des Artistes?
Regardless of a relationship or not, how does Equity effect your management of your company?It effects the singers but not the company. There are lots of singers to hire and if an equity contract gets in the way it is up to the artist to make suitable arrangements in order to be involved with Opera Kitchener.
What is the typical level/amount of performing experience that your lead and secondary singers have?At least 2 main shows as a lead under their belt, but we will hire first timers also.
When do you hold auditions? Every 2 - 3 years
Who do you want to hear from when you audition singers? Established artists? Fresh faced kids hungry to prove something?Everyone - locals mostly
How far in advance do you cast? 1 year
How far in advance do you choose productions? 1 year
When you audition, do you want to hear arias from the operas you're casting, or not at all? No. The same era or composer is important though
How often do cast members get re-cast in other productions if they do well in their first one? Very often.
In an audition: Sing it or act it? Both!
What else would you like singers to know about your company?People who drop out as a principle or chorus member are usually never hired back.

1 comment:

kevin smith said...

Nice post! This is enough to know about Opera Kitchener. Most people have the wrong impression that merely creating an attractive, informative, and convenient website will attract lots of visitors, and the business will run successfully. Actually you need to ensure that it is listed on the front pages of the search engines.

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