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 Glen Peterson


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
Phillip M. Mitchell, Treasurer
Nicholas J. VanderLaan, Secretary

FOTO Board Members
Suellen Bandyk
Tom Bandyk
Kate Baxter
Dr. John T. Frey
Clarice Geels
Jan Heerspink
Kyle Irwin
Nancy Knauss
June Marshall
Terri Mulligan
Joanie Snyder
Guenter Tusch
Dave VanderArk
Lorrie VanderArk
Dorothy Velasco

FOTO Members

Lifetime Members
William Bjork
Celebration Cinema
Carlos S. Guayara
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

Benefactors
Suellen Bandyk
Tom Bandyk
Peggy Barber
Gil Davis
Nancy Douglas
Carol Erickson
Wallace Erickson
Virginia Gearhart
Courtney Golding
Fran Hall
Claudiea Hardy
Jan Heerspink
Dan Herrick
Paul Howland
John Hunting
Nancy Knauss
Michael D. Loughman
Marilyn Macklin
John McGarry
Glen Peterson
George Snyder
Joanie Snyder
Guenter Tusch
Dave VanderArk
Lorrie VanderArk

Family
Anonymous
Jim & Judy Botts
John & Janet Boyles
Jim & Cathy Brady
Robert Byrens & Jerrod Nickels
Gregory Carnevale & Diane Nelson
Lisa DeFarrari & Dan DeWitt
John & Joanne Emmons
Wallace & Carol Erichseen
Bill & Cecile Fehsenfeld
Wolfgang & Mihaela Friedlmeier
John Hunting
Win & Kyle Iwrin
John T Jones & Nicholas J. VanderLaan
Bill & Nella Kennedy
Wallson & Rebecca Knack
Joe Kozakiewicz & Jennell Challa
Susan & Jerry Kruyf
John & Mary Loeks
Arend & Nancy Lubbers
Terri & Larry Mulligan
Dennis &  Joni Murphy
Roland Provost
Milt & Babara Rohwer
Alwyn & Christine Rougier-Chapman
Ellie Sarafis
Dale & Mary Schriemer
Jean Silbar & Dan Voorhees
Dave & Lynn Setsma
Diane St. Claire & Tom Northway
Cheryl & John Tully
Peter Turner
Karl & Jean VanderLaan

Individuals
Joanne Arnoys
Kate Baxter
Judy Borders
Cloe Danford
Lois DeBoer
Nancy DeBoer
Christopher Edgar
Louis Educato
Jean Enright
Robert G. Evett
Charles Gallmeyer
Virginia Gearhart
Phyllis Gendler
Claudia Hardy
Marilyn Heiss
Jerene Hofman-Bodkins
Joshilyn Hoisington
Shellie Jeffries
Shaula Johnston
Suzanne M. Karsen
Brigit M. Klohs
Michael Kopinski
Tony Kroes
Joan Lupton
Susan Ford Marschall
Ken Matheson
Chet Maternowski
Philip Mitchell
Julie Otterbein
Olive Padgett
Donald W. Potter
Madelyn Reges
Juanita Sharpe
Wendy Stock
Lee Strodman
Betsey Tinkham
Kathy Jo VanderLaan
Sandra L. VanderZiecht
Elaine VanKley
Arlene Warners
Karen Williams
Mitch Yang
Gloria Yff
Ellen Zahed