Students from Hillhurst School creating Doppel during Let's Create an Opera

Building generations of opera lovers.

Education programs are an essential part of what we do, enriching the experiences of our current patrons and building audiences for tomorrow through student and young people outreach. This includes great programs like Let’s Create an Opera that gives students the opportunity to create their own original opera, the Opera in Schools Tour that brings one-act operas into schools performed by Calgary Opera’s Emerging Artists, and Allegro Group for those opera lovers (or soon to be opera lovers) under 35. 

Thank you to Repsol and TD for believing that arts can make a positive difference to the lives of young people. We thank them for their generous support of our community programs. 

2015-16 Emerging Artists (Photo by Bookstrucker Photography)

Discover everything you need to know about opera, and Calgary Opera.

This section will teach you everything you need to know about Calgary opera, and opera - from buying a ticket to shouting Bravo! at the end of the performance, and everything in-between. You can also discover our Emerging Artist Development Program. Each season, Calgary Opera provides up to eight young singers with the opportunity to study and perform under a highly prestigious professional staff of teachers and performers. This program acts as a bridge between post-secondary education and the professional opera world.

Enbridge believes in making communities culturally vibrant through investments in the arts. We thank them for their generous support of our Emerging Artist program.

We thrive with your support.

Ticket sales cover less than a third of the cost of producing live opera, even on sold-out shows. We rely on government funding, sponsorships from corporations, and charitable donations to ensure that opera is alive and well for our community. 

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Ambur Braid & Adam Luther in The Magic Flute (Photo by Trudie Lee)

Production History

1971

First official meeting, November 2
First public meeting, December 14

1972

Alexander Gray, Artistic Director
Southern Alberta Opera Association incorporates on April 12, Maurice Lorieau President
Calgary Opera Guild forms, Gladys Hogarth President

1973

La Bohème
Rigoletto

1974

Carmen
Madama Butterfly

1975

Faust
La Traviata

1976

Cavalleria Rusticana & I Pagliacci
Die Fledermaus
Alexander Gray steps down as Artistic Director
Brian Hanson appointed as both General Manager and Artistic Director

1977

The Barber of Seville
Aida

1978

Don Giovanni
Lucia di Lammermoor
Un Ballo in Maschera

1979

The Merry Widow
Tosca
Il Trovatore

1980

Hansel & Gretel
La Bohème
The Mikado

1981

Turandot
Rigoletto
Carmen

1982

Marriage of Figaro
L’Elisir d’Amore
La Forza del Destino

1983

The Gondoliers
Norma
Madama Butterfly
Tales of Hoffman
Southern Alberta Opera Association changes name to Calgary Opera

1984

La Traviata
Cinderella
Don Pasquale

1985

Cavalleria Rusticana & I Pagliacci
Otello
Faust
Hansel & Gretel

1986

La Bohème
Die Fledermaus
The Mikado
Hansel & Gretel

1987

Tosca
Il Barbiere de Siviglia
Don Giovanni

1988

Porgy & Bess
Il Trovatore
Gala Tribute Concert to Brian Hanson
Carmen
Amahl and the Night Visitors
David Speers appointed as General Director of Calgary Opera

1989

Un Ballo in Maschera
The Magic Flute
Rigoletto
Amahl and the Night Visitors Tour

1990

La Fille du Regiment
Salome
The Pearl Fishers
Candide
Romeo & Juliette

1991

Madama Butterfly
Falstaff
Manon Lescaut
Marriage of Figaro

1992

The Flying Dutchman
Kathleen Battle in Recital
Carousel
L’Elisir d’Amore

1993

Nabucco
Frederica von Stade in Recital
The Merry Widow
Pirates of Penzance
Kiri Te Kanawa in Recital
Werther

1994

Lucia di Lammermoor
Cosi fan Tutte
Christmas Concert with The Calgary Opera Chorus

1995

Samuel Ramey in Recital
Albert Herring
Cecilia Bartoli in Concert
La Traviata
La Bohème
Tracy Dahl & Richard Margison in Recital

1996

La Cenerentola
Ben Heppner in Concert
Eugene Onegin
Turandot

1997

The Mikado
The Magic Flute
Mozart’s Magic Fantasy
Jessye Norman in Recital
Tosca

1998

The Barber of Seville
Faust
Ben Heppner in Recital
Verdi’s Requiem
W.R. (Bob) McPhee C.M. appointed as General Director & CEO
Rigoletto

1999

Don Giovanni
Richard Margison in Concert
Carmen (New Production)
The Pearl Fishers (Canadian Premiere) (New Production)

2000

Aida (New Production)
Die Fledermaus
Kathleen Battle in Recital
John Estacio appointed Composer-in-Residence
Il Trovatore
Mary Lou Fallis: Primadonna

2001

Susannah (Company Premiere) 
Turtle Wakes (Calgary Opera New Work) (World Premiere)
Madame Butterfly
Kiri Te Kanawa
Marriage of Figaro

2002

Dialogues of the Carmelites (Company Premiere) (New Production)
La Bohème
30th Anniversary Gala Celebration Concert
Don Pasquale (New Production)
Hansel & Gretel (New Production)

2003

Filumena (Calgary Opera New Work co-commissioned with the Banff Centre) (World Premiere)
La Traviata
Romeo & Juliet

2004

Sweeney Todd (Company Premiere) (New Production)
Tales of Hoffmann
The Black Rider: The Casting of the Magic Bullets (Company Premiere)
Jubilee Auditorium closed from July 2004 – September 2005 for renovations
Lakmé (Company Premiere)
Laura Whalen & Marc Hervieux in Recital with Accompanist Kinza Tyrrell

2005

Valdine Anderson & Kimberly Barber in Recital with Accompanist Peter Tiefenbach
Turtle Wakes School Tour
A Kurt Weill Cabaret Featuring The Seven Deadly Sins (Company Premiere)
John Tessier in Recital with Accompanist Emily Hamper
Jubilee Auditorium Re-Opens
Homecoming Celebration with Alberta Ballet in the Newly Renovated Jubilee
Turandot

2006

Dead Man Walking (Canadian Premiere) (New Production)
The Magic Flute
La Cenerentola (New Production)

2007

Frobisher (Calgary Opera New Work) (World Premiere)
Carmen
Renée Fleming in Concert
Kiri Te Kanawa in Recital
Rigoletto (New Production)

2008

The Ballad of Baby Doe (Canadian Premiere)
Tosca
Hannaraptor (Calgary Opera New Work) (World Premiere)
Faust
L’enfant et les Sortilèges (The Enchanted Child) (New Production)

2009

Gordon Gerrard is appointed Resident Conductor & Repetiteur 
Ariadne auf Naxos (Company Premiere)
The Barber of Barrhead (School Tour)
The Barber of Seville
Manon

2010

Little Women (New Production) (Canadian Premiere)
Cinderella (School Tour)
Don Giovanni (New Production)
Lucia di Lammermoor

2011

The Inventor (Calgary Opera New Work) (World Premiere)
The Brothers Grimm (School Tour)
Aida
Così fan tutte (Emerging Artist Showcase) (New Production)
Pagliacci / Gianni Schicchi

2012

Moby Dick (Calgary Opera New Work co-commissioned with San Francisco Opera, San Diego Opera, Dallas Opera & The State Opera of South Australia) (Canadian Premiere)
The Magic Flute (School Tour)
La Bohème
Ariodante (Emerging Artist Showcase) (New Production)
What Brought Us Here (World Premiere)
Otello (New Production)


2013

Christopher “Topher” Mokrzewski is appointed Resident Conductor & Repetiteur 
Falstaff
La Traviata
Hannaraptor (School Tour)
The Spanish Hour / Susanna's Secret (Emerging Artist Showcase) (New Production)
Pirates of Penzance (Opera in the Village) (New Production)
The Italian Girl in Algiers

2014

The Flying Dutchman (New Production)
Madame Butterfly (New Production)
Hansel and Gretel (School Tour)
The Rape of Lucretia (Emerging Artist Showcase) (New Production)
Candide (Opera in the Village) (New Production)
Silent Night (Calgary Opera New Work) (Canadian Premiere)
Christmas at the Opera (Emerging Artist Showcase)

2015

The Marriage of Figaro
The Scorpions' Sting (School Tour)
Carmen
The Mikado (Opera in the Village) (New Production)
Lakmé
The Enchanted Child (L’enfant et les sortilèges) (Emerging Artist Showcase) (New Production)

2016

Die tote Stadt (Canadian Premiere) (New Production)
The Magic Flute
Die Fledermaus
Doctor Miracle (Le Docteur Miracle) (Emerging Artist Showcase) (New Production)

2017

Filumena (Remount of Calgary Opera's original work [co-commissioned with the Banff Centre])
Cinderella (School Tour) (New Production)
Turandot