OPERA America Announces 2022 Opera Hall of Fame Inductees and National Opera Trustee Recognition Award Recipients

By Chris Ruel

OPERA America has announced “OPERA America Salutes,” a celebration of opera’s outstanding leaders and the organization’s next 50 years.

The March 4, 2022 event honoring artists, producers, and champions of the art form, will take place at The University Club of New York, and be hosted by mezzo-soprano, Denyce Graves. OPERA America will funnel the proceeds for the event into development programs, such as Leadership Intensive, New General Director Roundtables, and mentorship programs, all part of its “50 More” campaign.

“After an extremely challenging two years, OPERA America is thrilled to gather once again to celebrate some of the most influential members of the American opera community,” stated Marc A. Scorca, president and CEO of OPERA America on the organization’s website. “The Opera Hall of Fame and National Opera Trustee Recognition Awards recognize those whose contributions have shaped the field and laid the groundwork for opera to flourish in the future. It is a fitting way to finally celebrate OPERA America’s 50th anniversary, which was cut short in 2020 by the pandemic.”

OPERA American established the Opera Hall of Fame in 2020 to celebrate a half-century of progress in the field. According to the OPERA America website, “The Opera Hall of Fame recognizes the achievements of outstanding living American artists, administrators, and advocates who have strengthened the art form and the field.”

The 2022 inductees into the Opera Hall of Fame are Reri Grist, Charles MacKay, Marlena Malas, and Virginia Zeani.

Opera AMERICA will induct the Hall of Fame Class of 2021 alongside that of 2022 and comprises Patricia K. Beggs, Grace Bumbry, Matthew Epstein, Simon Estes, Gordon Getty, David Gockley, Camille LaBarre, George Shirley, Dawn Upshaw, and Roma Witcoff.

Also announced were the 2022 National Opera Trustee Recognition Award recipients. This award recognizes trustees of U.S. opera companies for their unparalleled leadership. The 2020 and 2022 awards will be presented in tandem.

Recipients of the 2022 award are Gary Casagrande, MassOpera; Arlene Ferebee, Opera Carolina; John Fitzgerald, IN Series; Susan G. Marineau, The Santa Fe Opera; and Ranney Mize, New Orleans Opera.

Trustees who will receive the 2020 award are Robert Ellis, San Francisco Opera; Linda Koehn, Des Moines Metro Opera; Phil Meyer, Pacific Opera Project; Chris and Anita Murray, Opera Las Vegas; Bernt von Ohlen, Minnesota Opera.