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The Vancouver Opera Guild: A tradition of contribution and community

Founded in 1960 as an adjunct to the Vancouver Opera Association, the Vancouver Opera Guild was incorporated as a separate organization under the British Columbia Societies Act in 1979, and has maintained a proud tradition of promoting and supporting opera in British Columbia ever since.

The Guild’s core mandate has always been to foster the entire opera ecosystem, from early education to that breathtaking moment when the lights go up on opening night. Through the years, we’ve partnered with schools to bring everything from informative talks to fully-mounted mini-operas directly into classrooms and auditoria across the province. To support emerging artists, the Guild hosts the annual Metropolitan Opera National Council-sponsored Laffont Competition, and since 1982 has disbursed career development awards to rising talents like Spencer Britten (2018) and Magali Simard-Galdès (2016), recently seen as Lysander and Tytania in the 2023 VO production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream. We also help facilitate at the presentation stage, like the support that makes possible a stunning, suitably Wagnerian-proportioned production like The Flying Dutchman.

With opera as the centre point of unforgettable shared experiences, the Guild leads escorted tours to some of the world’s most vibrant cities, from European centres like London, Vienna, Berlin, Palermo, Parma (Verdi Festival), to North American jewels like New York, Santa Fe, and San Francisco. These tours provide an opportunity to not only see a wide variety of world-class productions, but to take in the many sights, sounds, and flavours of great destinations alongside fellow opera enthusiasts (who obviously have exceptional taste!). Closer to home, we stay connected through events like our Spring Luncheon and of course by attending the sublime productions mounted by our major beneficiary, Vancouver Opera.

Vienna State Opera at night

Through educational projects, career building, social engagements, and production sponsorship, The Vancouver Opera Guild is proud to play a key role in championing this spectacular art form and contributing to arts and culture in Vancouver, across the province, and wherever in the world our torch-bearing members travel.

Learn more about how you can support and take part at www.vancouveroperaguild.com.