1. Click Here to Lift the curtain
  2. Nurturing Talent

    Opera lovers in Canterbury deserve to experience the best.

    Producing quality opera of an international standard is a very rewarding yet expensive business requiring great vision and high levels of performance, direction and production.

    The Opera Foundation was established in 2001 to ensure that funding is available to identify and foster local talent. The Foundation supports professional opera to ensure it can continue to provide opportunities for young talented artists to develop their craft.

    For young artists to develop creatively and professionally, they need both training and regular performance opportunities. Embodied in the Trust Deed is the commitment to support high-quality, professional opera opportunities for local artists, audiences and theatre practitioners.

    The Foundation supports our local and national professional opera companies.  Grants have enabled local artists to benefit from vocal coaching with renowned International Accompanist and Repetiteur Sharolyn Kimmorley AM, and participate in stagecraft workshops with International Director Chuck Hudson.

    The Foundation assists young artists to attend workshops and audition opportunities.

    The Foundation presents local audiences with regular events and opportunities to meet both visiting and local artists and theatre practitioners who are part of the professional opera productions in Canterbury.
    We support New Zealand Opera’s commitment to a truly national opera company.


    “The Foundation’s support enabled me to attend the Lisa Gasteen National Opera school, and came at a time when I was seeking to make the leap to the next level professionally. I will never forget this amazing hand-up, and feel like I’ve now got a whole Foundation ‘family’. When I’m performing I know they’re right there behind me, willing me to succeed.”

    Amanda Atlas

    Our vital role

    Opera is a national treasure we are committed to preserving

    Our principal and long-term aim is to create and grow a fund that will enable us to nurture talented young Cantabrians, ensuring local audiences continue to enjoy professional opera in Canterbury. We are joined in this vision by opera lovers, friends and supporters making their own contributions to the fund through donations, bequests and participation in our calendar of special fundraising events. Many have already helped increase our capital base with their generosity.

    Foundation Patron Teddy Tahu Rhodes , whose talent was nurtured in Christchurch, has built an international career as a Bass Baritone. He started out on the Canterbury stage.

    “I had the support, opportunity and encouragement I needed to give me a very strong start on the road to where I am today,”... “I’m extremely grateful for that, and fully endorse the work the Foundation is doing to provide the same opportunities for the talented youth of the future, and the continuing success of opera in Canterbury.”

    Show your support

    Help ensure wonderful opera theatre experiences continue to be available in Canterbury

    If you love opera and want to help ensure wonderful opera theatre experiences continue to be available in Canterbury, for the enjoyment of you, your family and friends, then you may consider either making a donation or a bequest.

    Making a private donation is the way to contribute directly to the Foundation fund, and you will then be eligible for a tax rebate too. Your support will ensure that there is professional opera in the South Island and that valuable emerging talent in the South Island can be supported. Simply complete the tear-off form below, and send your donation to The Opera Foundation and we will do the rest for you.

    By making a Bequest by Will, you can help strengthen The Foundation’s financial standing and ensure new audiences can be entertained and delighted by opera theatre for years to come.

    To find out more about making a contribution to the Foundation, as well as special events for Foundation supporters, please give Lynne Havenaar a call on 03 960 4090, or download the donation form below.

    If you wish, Lynne can arrange for one of our Trustees to visit you in person to give you more information or discuss financial support options in total confidence.


    Contact Us

    PO Box 33244, Christchurch 8244

    T 03 960 4090

    e info@operafoundation.co.nz