United Arts grant could keep opera alive in Orlando

Posted on: July 2, 2009

Monday’s (6/29) Orlando Business Journal reports, “United Arts of Central Florida Board of Directors voted to earmark $200,000 for a proposal to keep opera alive in Central Florida, following the Orlando Opera Company’s Chapter 7 bankruptcy filing in early June.” United Arts is a fund-raising agency for arts and science organizations in Central Florida. “The Orlando Philharmonic Orchestra is set to decide Aug. 15 whether it will present a staged concert opera next year, said Carol Conner, president of the organization’s board of directors. Conner told the United Arts board June 25 she views the proposal as a ‘bridge’ to future opera offerings. The goal is for a new opera company to be in place when the $425 million Dr. P. Phillips Orlando Performing Arts Center opens. Construction on that project was supposed to begin this year, with an opening set for 2012. However, plunging tourist tax revenue, which funds a portion of the project, threatens to delay the start of the project by at least two to three years. … If the Orlando Philharmonic decides not to proceed with the plan, the funds will go back into the pool of United Arts funds for area agencies.”

Posted July 2, 2009