Hispanics for LA Opera Celebrates 25 Years

PD Domingo Award Photo

Hispanics for LA Opera was launched in February 1992 at the request of Peter Hemmings, then general director of LA Opera, with the enthusiastic support of Plácido Domingo. They were interested in engaging this vibrant, growing segment of the Los Angeles community education and welcoming them to the opera. Hemmings reached out to LA Opera subscribers and patrons Alicia and Ed Clark, who stepped forward to lead this effort by founding HLAO. Their leadership initiated an effort that has been an integral source of support for building the understanding and awareness of the operatic art form in Hispanic communities throughout Los Angeles.

Members of HLAO

Members of HLAO

Over the past 25 years, HLAO volunteers have enthusiastically promoted opera throughout the Hispanic community, encouraging attendance at performances and coordinating social activities that offer opportunities to learn more about the art form while getting to know other opera enthusiasts. They have enjoyed a large measure of success. In 1992, Hispanic attendees at LA Opera performances made up just 1% of the overall audience; today that figure is more than 14%. This is more than a tenfold increase!

In addition to promoting opera throughout the Hispanic community, HLAO hosts the annual Plácido Domingo Awards. This special event honors great Hispanic opera artists and civic leaders for their community service and support of the mission of HLAO. Over the years, a number of legendary artists have been the recipients of the award including Ramón Vargas, Ana María Martínez, Erwin Schrott, Juan Diego Flórez, Rolando Villazón, Suzanna Guzmán and Ailyn Pérez.

This year’s awards ceremony and dinner will take place on April 2 in the Eva and Marc Stern Grand Hall immediately following that day’s matinee performance of The Tales of Hoffmann. Plácido Domingo, the conductor of the performance, will be on hand to celebrate HLAO’s 25-year commitment to LA Opera.

HLAO’s commitment to LA Opera is deep and its members understand that the company relies on charitable contributions to bring the finest artists and works to the mainstage and to continue its important work in the Los Angeles community.

HLAO membership is open to everyone who has an interest in opera. Sign-up for a complimentary associate membership by clicking here to receive invitations to HLAO events. Plans for this season include Night at the Opera receptions, opportunities to meet and hear from Hispanic artists, and other social gatherings.

For tickets and more information about the Plácido Domingo Awards, please contact Michael Chavez at 213.972.8097 or specialevents@laopera.org. You can also click here. Proceeds will support LA Opera and its educational and community engagement programming, which reaches thousands of Hispanic students and families across the community.

LA Opera is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization dedicated to the greater good.
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