Opera Grand Rapids enriches our West Michigan community through the creativity and excellence of this timeless art form. Opera is a unique, powerful experience that moves people. Opera is also an occasion–a night out filled with music, vocal athleticism, drama, and a story with an emotional appeal that brings people back time after time.
Opera Grand Rapids began in 1967 as the dream of a handful of opera-loving Grand Rapidians. Today, we are the longest-running professional opera company in Michigan. Located in the heart of West Michigan, Opera Grand Rapids’ productions are produced and presented locally. For its productions, Opera Grand Rapids engages some of the world’s most talented artists, stage directors, conductors, choreographers, set designers, costume designers, and others, in addition to the regional Grand Rapids Symphony Orchestra, and Opera Grand Rapids Chorus and Children’s Chorus.
Opera Grand Rapids hosts an annual Collegiate Vocal Competition, in which vocal students compete in an operatic concert. Judged by professionals, the competition showcases West Michigan’s finest budding vocal artists—many of whom go on to sing in our Opera Grand Rapids Chorus.
In 2005, Opera Grand Rapids joined forces with Aquinas College, Calvin College, Grand Rapids Community College, Grand Valley State University, Hope College, Kendall College of Art and Design of Ferris State University, and Western Michigan University. Together, these colleges and universities make up the West Michigan Collegiate Consortium, underwriting the Opera Grand Rapids Student Dress Rehearsal Program that allows students to attend Opera Grand Rapids productions at no cost.
We are also proud to call Betty Van Andel Opera Center our home. Completed in 2010, the facility is the Nation’s first LEED Certified opera production facility.
In our facility, we build our opera productions, coordinating costumes, music and staging. The Opera Center is also home to our administrative offices, costume shop, meeting spaces, and vocal suites. The Opera Center is available for rentals for special events such as weddings and concerts.