For Immediate Release
Contact: Patricia Kiernan Johnson;

News Release | June 16, 2014
Contact: Patricia Kiernan Johnson, Director of Marketing and Communications

Record-Setting Attendance for OPERA America’s
June 20 – 23 in San Francisco, CA

Hosted by San Francisco Opera
In Association with Opera Volunteers International

Four Sessions of Fieldwide Impact to be Streamed Live at

New York, NY — OPERA America, the national nonprofit service organization for opera, is pleased to announce details of Opera Conference 2014: Audiences Reimagined, to be held in San Francisco, CA from June 20–23. Hosted by San Francisco Opera, in association with Opera Volunteers International, this largest annual gathering of opera professionals in North America will convene at venues in Union Square and the Civic Center. It marks the first time the Conference will be held in San Francisco in 25 years.

With registration still open, Opera Conference 2014 has already broken OPERA America’s all-time attendance record, previously held by the 2010 conference in Los Angeles.

OPERA America’s annual conference presents a unique opportunity for industry leaders to examine issues affecting the opera community from a variety of perspectives. With the theme Audiences Reimagined, conference attendees will explore how opera companies and artists can benefit from an increasingly broad, diverse and engaged audience through innovative technologies and exciting alternative performance offerings.

Topics planned for opera conference attendees cover all facets of the art form and address the concerns of creators, administrators, trustees and supporters. Highlights of the many conference-wide sessions, performances and showcases include:

  • The Opening Session featuring discussion and music performed by legendary mezzo-soprano Frederica von Stade and composer Jake Heggie;
  • General Session: Achieving Civic Impact, led by Alan Brown of WolfBrown, exploring what it means for opera companies to be embedded in their communities;
  • General Session: Re-Imagining Impact: The User Experience, during which leading innovators from beyond the opera field will inspire attendees with innovative examples of UX;
  • General Session: Leadership Begins at the Top, featuring a panel of board leaders who shed light on new works, new audiences and financial stability from the trustee perspective;
  • The New Works Forum, which nurtures more informed producers and creators of new operas and establishes stronger relationships among them;
  • The Singer Training Forum, for those who are dedicated to the identification and development of aspiring singers;
  • The New Works Sampler, with performances of works-in-progress and recent premieres, featuring the wide spectrum of musical styles employed by today’s emerging and established composers; and
  • San Francisco Opera performances of Show Boat, La Traviata and Madame Butterfly at the iconic War Memorial Opera House, as well as Opera Parallèle’s American premiere production of Anya17 at Marines’ Memorial Theatre.

Twenty-two Open Sessions provide conference attendees with valuable and practical information in specific administrative areas, including marketing, fundraising, governance, artistic planning, education and audience development. For the third straight year, Opera Conference 2014 is presented in association with Opera Volunteers International. Throughout the conference, a number of sessions address the important role that volunteers play in the success of the local opera company.

On Sunday, June 22, OPERA America presents a special Artist Intensive program for artists of all levels, taking place at the San Francisco War Memorial & Performing Arts Center’s Harold L. Zellerbach Rehearsal Hall. This half-day professional development workshop features feedback auditions, portfolio reviews, one-on-one mentoring sessions with industry experts, panel discussions and presentations.

“We are delighted to bring our annual conference to San Francisco after a 25 year absence,” stated OPERA America’s President/CEO Marc A. Scorca. “The legendary San Francisco Opera has been an exemplar in the development of new works, training of young artists and artistic standards of the highest quality,” he continued.

The innovative thinking and valuable tools gained during Opera Conference 2014 are not limited to those able to travel to San Francisco. Select sessions will be streamed live on OPERA America’s website at and archived on the organization’s YouTube channel ( Conference attendees and live stream viewers are encouraged to interact and share highlights on Twitter with the hashtag #OperaConf.

Sessions streaming live from San Francisco at are:

  • Opening Session
    Friday, June 20
    2:00 – 3:30 p.m. PDT (5:00 p.m. – 6:30 p.m. EDT)
  • Achieving Civic Impact
    Saturday, June 21
    9:00 a.m. – 10:30 a.m. PDT (12:00 – 1:30 p.m. EDT)
  • Re-Imagining Impact: The User Experience
    Sunday, June 22
    2:00 – 4:00 p.m. PDT (5:00 – 7:00 p.m. EDT)
  • Leadership Begins at the Top
    Monday, June 23
    10:00 – 11:00 a.m. PDT (1:00 – 2:00 p.m. EDT)

See the Programming Details attachment for additional Opera Conference 2014 session and event information.

OPERA America gratefully acknowledges the support of the following Opera Conference 2014 sponsors:

American Express
Arts Consulting Group
The Arts Insurance Program, LLC
Auerbach Consultants
Bank of America
Comnet Marketing Group Inc.
The Dallas Opera
E. & J. Gallo Winery
Figaro Systems, Inc.
Fisher Dachs Associates
The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation
The James Irvine Foundation
Kaiser Permanente
Meyer Sound
Music Publishers Association
National Endowment for the Arts
Opera News
Quarterline Design Management
Rhinegold Publishing
Schuler Shook
SD&A Teleservices, Inc.
US Arno Group
Wells Fargo

For more information about Opera Conference 2014 and to register, visit

For press credentials or interviews, contact Patricia K. Johnson, director of marketing and communications, at

View the entire conference schedule and program book.

Follow the conference conversation on Twitter with #OperaConf and @OPERAAmerica.

Watch live-streamed conference sessions at

Special Registration Offer for the Bay Area Arts Community at @OPERAAmerica

About OPERA America
OPERA America ( leads and serves the entire opera community, supporting the creation, presentation and enjoyment of opera.
  • Artistic services help opera companies and creative and performing artists to improve the quality of productions and increase the creation and presentation of North American works.
  • Information, technical and administrative services to opera companies reflect the need for strengthened leadership among staff, trustees and volunteers.
  • Education, audience development and community services are designed to enhance all forms of opera appreciation.

Founded in 1970, OPERA America’s worldwide membership network includes nearly 200 Company Members, 300 Associate and Business Members, 2,000 Individual Members and more than 10,000 subscribers to the association’s electronic news service. In response to the critical need for suitable audition, rehearsal and recording facilities, OPERA America opened the first ever NATIONAL OPERA CENTER ( in September 2012 in New York City. With a wide range of artistic and administrative services in a purpose-built facility, OPERA America is dedicated to increasing the level of excellence, creativity and effectiveness across the field.