Opera Grand Rapids is saddened at the loss of one of our greatest friends, Karl VanderLaan. Karl and his wife Jean have supported our music education programs for nearly twenty years and were constant champions of arts education. Karl and Jean have demonstrated the powerful impact of philanthropy and continue to do so with the establishment of the VanderLaan Music Education Fund at Opera Grand Rapids. Our National Collegiate Vocal Competition was a particular focus of Karl and Jean’s philanthropic endeavors. From sponsoring prizes to hosting dinners for the competitors, the VanderLaans’ generosity boosted the program for years. It is in a spirit of gratitude and humility that Opera Grand Rapids is pleased to announce the renaming of our National Collegiate Vocal Competition to The VanderLaan Prize.