An Evening of Celebration and Rising Stars!

by christian.anderson

The Springs Gala and the 29th Annual Dallas Opera Guild Vocal Competition

Sunday, April 30, 2017
Pre-Competition Gala Dinner 5:30 p.m.
Vocal Competition Finals 7:30 p.m.
Post-Competition Celebration 10:00-11:30 p.m.

Featuring The Dallas Opera Orchestra
Conducted by Music Director Emmanuel Villaume


The Margot and Bill Winspear Opera House
At the AT&T Performing Arts Center
2403 Flora Street, Dallas, TX 75201


Honoring Dr. Susan Fleming

Tickets for Gala: Visit or Call 214-443-1063
Vocal Competition:

            DALLAS, TX, APRIL 12, 2017 – The Dallas Opera announces one remarkable evening of music, competition, and celebration as two great traditions come together. The Dallas Opera Springs Gala 2017 returns this year in partnership with the final round of the 29th Annual Dallas Opera Guild Vocal Competition. The events focus on encouraging the next generation of artists with proceeds from the Gala to support the company’s education programs.

            The Guild Vocal Competition Semi-Finals features twenty of the finest young opera singers in the United States competing for prestige and prizes Saturday, April 29, 2017, 11:00 am – 5:00 pm. This free event, from which up to six finalists will be chosen, takes place at the Winspear Opera House.           

Marina Costa-Jackson - Photo by Suzanne Vinnik - red-dress-vinnik-pp-2000x1301-39 (640x416)

Soprano Marina Costa-Jackson is the Mistress of Ceremonies for the Vocal Competition Finals and performs at the Springs Gala Post-Competition Party.

            The Finals are held the following day, Sunday, April 30, 2017, 7:30-10:00 p.m. also at the Winspear Opera House, as part of the Springs Gala. Each artist sings two arias and is accompanied by the acclaimed Dallas Opera Orchestra, conducted by the Mrs. Eugene McDermott Music Director Emmanuel Villaume. The Mistress of Ceremonies for the event is charismatic soprano Marina Costa-Jackson, who is currently starring in the role of “the other woman” Adalgisa in TDO’s production of Norma.

          The judges for this year’s competition, which include some of the most important artistic leaders from major American and International companies, are: Brian Zeger – Chair (The Julliard School), Keith Cerny (the Kern Wildenthal General Director and CEO of The Dallas Opera), Emmanuel Villaume, Andreas Melinat (Lyric Opera of Chicago), Pål Moe (Bavarian State Opera), Diane Zola (Houston Grand Opera), and Joshua Winograde (Metropolitan Opera).

            Last year, prize monies totaling $18,500 were awarded to the young competitors. Audience members can also take part in the festivities by casting their vote in the popular “People’s Choice” category, also awarded that evening. Tickets for the Finals are $5 and available online, at the door, or by calling our Ticket Office at 214-443-1000.

            The Dallas Opera Springs Gala 2017 is an elegant evening that features wonderful dining, dancing, and a performance by Ms. Costa-Jackson that takes place in the magnificent Winspear Opera House. The gourmet dinner will be prepared by culinary master Wolfgang Puck. After the Finals, patrons who attend the Gala are invited to share in the celebration at a Post-Competition party with the artists and the judges. Ms. Costa-Jackson will dazzle guests with selections from Broadway and opera. The Marc Toussaint Combo, the jazz and swing band, will perform great danceable standards certain to get party-goers movin’. Gala tickets are $500 and include vocal competition priority seating ticket and complimentary valet parking. The proceeds from the Gala help nurture and support the education programs of The Dallas Opera which bring the magic of opera to students throughout North Texas. For further information visit or call 214-443-1063.

          According to Dallas Opera Guild 2017 Vocal Competition Chairs Patsy and Bob Brooks, “The Dallas Opera Guild Vocal Competition gives singers pursuing a professional opera career the opportunity to showcase their talents and compete with other singers for financial rewards.  Best of all is the chance to perform before a panel of distinguished judges celebrated throughout the opera world.”

          The prominence of the Vocal Competition was greatly enhanced three years ago when it was expanded from a regional event to a major national event. This change reflected the continuing goals of Keith Cerny to elevate the company’s artistic quality, establish and grow local artistic partnerships, and maximize the company’s national and international reputation. He also added several new elements. Mr. Cerny enlisted Dr. Brian Zeger of The Julliard School to chair the distinguished judges’ panel, engaged The Dallas Opera Orchestra to rehearse and perform with the young artists, and requested internationally acclaimed conductor Emmanuel Villaume to lead the performances. These improvements showed immediate results as a record setting number of higher caliber performers applied for the competition.

Honoring Dr. Susan Fleming

          This year’s vocal competition honors former Dallas Opera Guild President Dr. Susan Fleming, renowned for her philanthropy and leadership as well as her continuing work with children with communication disorders. Dr. Fleming dedicates her time away from work to numerous professional and volunteer organizations including the Dream Team of the Rotary Club of Dallas and CASA, and has held several positions with The Dallas Opera Guild Board. She is also a UT Dallas Distinguished Alumni Award winner.

            “I am touched by my selection,” writes Susan Fleming, “as this places me in the company of the dynamic guild leaders I have admired; those who have contributed so much to The Dallas Opera Guild’s effectiveness in promoting and sustaining the annual Vocal Competition.

            “Each person who contributes to this competition,” she adds, “should feel proud to be helping promote young singers as they strive for success in this especially beautiful art form.”

          Lexus Red Parking is available for just $5 at both the Semi-Finals Round, from 11:00 a.m. until 5:00 p.m. on Saturday, April 29th as well as the Finals Round of the competition the following evening, Sunday, April 30th at 7:30 p.m. in the Winspear Opera House.









The Nancy A. Nasher and David J. Haemisegger Family


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The Dallas Opera Family Performances are generously supported by

Texas Instruments and the Betty and Steve Suellentrop

Educational Outreach Fund.


TDO Family Performances are a part of the

Perot Foundation Education and Community Outreach Programs


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