Opera New England of Northeastern Connecticut, Inc. d/b/a Performing Arts of Northeast Connecticut is a non-profit 501(c) 3, all-volunteer organization. Board members represent the northeastern Connecticut area and include business, arts and civic leaders, educators, healthcare service providers, homemakers and retirees. These board members have a shared purpose – to provide the opportunity for local schoolchildren to be introduced to the creative artistry, beauty and story line in live professional productions of the opera and orchestra. (See a list of our board members)
Our mission to the community is to provide a variety of professional arts events at affordable prices that appeal to people of all ages in northeastern Connecticut and nearby areas. Central to our mission are our Children’s Educational Opera and Symphony Programs, presented free of charge to area towns, which introduce children to professional performances of both the opera and the symphony, and which supply supportive educational materials.
Since 1974 we have worked in partnership with the Boston Lyric Opera and, most recently, with Salt Marsh Opera Company to offer a Children’s Educational Opera Program. In 2007, we expanded this commitment to include, in collaboration with the New Haven Symphony Orchestra’s Young People’s Concerts, the Children’s Educational Symphony Program.
We continue to explore new artist opportunities and are excited to expand our FREE classroom offerings by bringing a NEW Kindergarten program this season to schools in the region. Science of Sound: When Is It Music? is a 45-minute in-class workshop, which will examine the nature and creation of sound through hands-on activities, observation and creative exploration, and song. Led by educator and professional musician, Sally Rogers, this program is intended to supplement music curriculum by encouraging our youngest students to engage in inquiry-based learning and guided critical thinking to explore principles of sound and how music is created.
We currently partner with 40 schools in 26 towns of northeast Connecticut in Tolland, Windham and New London counties, and other towns in nearby Massachusetts. These programs, which span grade levels from kindergarten to fifth, are offered free of charge to area schoolchildren and this year will provide a new kindergarten program, Science of Sound: When Is It Music?
Beyond our yearly free educational programming, Performing Arts also sponsors family-oriented professional productions performed at local venues, making them available to the public at reasonable prices. In recent years performances included: Brubeck Brothers Quartet, Trout Fishing in America; Connecticut Lyric Opera’s Madama Butterfly; Judy Collins; Tom Chapin and Friends; Arlo Guthrie; and a Holiday favorite, The Nutcracker.
All children’s educational programming is funded through corporate sponsors, board member donations, local and state awarded grants and individual donors. You can help keep music alive in northeastern Connecticut by supporting our mission and the cultural well-being of our entire community. Donate Today!