Opera and Philanthropy in the 21st Century

These are tricky times for opera fundraisiners all over the world!

With the increasing decline in funding from national governments, corporations and foundations, opera companies more and more are turning to individual philantropy for the funding of main-stage productions, tours and Festivals.  In many ways we have returned to the early days of opera when productions only happened thanks to the largesse and passion of kings, doges, and even mad emperors, who in the 21st century have become the philanthropists we all seek to engage and cultivate.

But how do we opera fundraisers identify, cultivate and ultimately convert these modern day monarchs to becoming devoted supporters of our opera companies from that first major show of support to that large bequest they will leave us in their wills? 

Join Opera Europa’s Friends & Fundraising forum this spring in Milan when we will return to the country that witnessed the birth of opera to discuss, debate, share knowledge and explore how we can attract and grow this key funding base for opera in the 21st century. 

Our Fundraising & Friends forum will be held from 18-20 March 2019 and will be hosted by the Accademia La Scala. The Forum will include sessions where we will bring together arts philanthropists and fundraisers from the United States, the U.K, Europe and Asia to explore how you identify, cultivate, engage with and ultimately convert more individual supporters towards building a new dynamic funding base for opera in these challenging times. It will also contribute ideas towards Opera Europa’s new Advocacy campaign to be launched next autumn.

There will be an opportunity to attend a performance on Tuesday 19 March of Teatro alla Scala’s new production of Musorgsky’s Khovanshchina directed by Mario Martone and conducted by Valery Gergiev.

We hope to see you there!

Andrew Higgins 
Chair, Opera Europa Fundraising & Friends forum