Friends of the Opera

Friends of the Opera (FOTO) began in 1974 as a support group for Opera Grand Rapids. As an independent non-profit organization with more than 175 members, FOTO works to promote the love of opera in West Michigan.

FOTO members help house visiting artists, host cast parties and educational events. To become a FOTO member, please complete and return the Membership Form. For details about joining, email FOTO President John T. Jones.

FOTO Mission

To provide access to opera, to facilitate opera education, and to encourage support of opera within the communities in which we serve.


Pre-Performance Talks

Join Friends of the Opera for an informative discussion about the opera on the orchestra floor one hour before curtain.

October 13 & 14, 2017  |  6:30 PM         Rigoletto
DeVos Performance Hall

Presenter Glen Peterson

May 4 & 5, 2018  |  6:30 PM               The Marriage of Figaro
DeVos Performance Hall

Presenter Gilbert R. Davis


Cast Parties

October 14, 2017  |  Immediately following Rigoletto
Betty Van Andel Opera Center

Additional 2017-2018 Cast Parties to be announced.


FOTO Board

FOTO Officers
John T. Jones, President
Roland Prevost, Past President
Peggy Barber, Vice President
Joanie Snyder, Treasurer
Kate Baxter, Secretary

FOTO Board Members
Suellen Bandyk
Tom Bandyk
Dr. John T Frey
Clarice Geels
Terri Handlin-Mulligan
Jan Heerspink
Kyle Irwin
Nancy Knauss
Guenter Tusch
Dave VanderArk
Lorrie VanderArk
Dorothy Velasco

FOTO Members

Lifetime Members
William Bjork
Celebration Cinema
Carlos Guayana
Jacquelyn DeRegnaucourt
Dr. John T. Frey
Clarice Geels
Stephen Hoyle
Dr. Gary and Patricia Hartman-Hurt
Dr. John Iacobucci
Margaret P. Idema
Sidney J. Jr. & Cate Jansma
Marcia Kapolka
Marilyn Titche

Honorary
Muriel Burger
Harriet Christensen
Joan F. Gillett
Lois Loetz
Robert Lyall
June L. Marshall
Stella Royce
Foley Schuler
John Schuster-Craig
Richard Stien

Opera Grand Rapids Staff
Anne Berquist
Kate Folkert
Angela Freier
Maestro James Meena
Ashley Roberts
Sarah Watson