Palm Beach Opera announces that it has received a groundbreaking $6 million gift from an anonymous notable local foundation, the largest donation in company history. The multi-year funding will support PBO’s new 18,000 square-foot Northwood home, its rigorous Apprentice Artist training program, and three mainstage productions.
“We are immensely grateful for this extraordinary record-breaking support and commitment to Palm Beach Opera,” said General and Artistic Director David Walker. “This gift will not only directly support the incredible artistry and performances seen on PBO’s stage, but will also be a crucial proponent for our continued training of emerging opera artists. This support will also secure the success of Palm Beach Opera’s exciting new venture in Northwood. Our intention for PBO’s first-ever home is to create a flourishing space for artistic rehearsals, artist training, education, community engagement, and unique artistic programming, staff collaboration and growth, and more, as well as be a vital and integral part of the community as we grow into our next 60 decades.”
Earlier this year and after decades of searching, Palm Beach Opera found a facility to meet the company’s unique and expanding needs in the historic Northwood community in West Palm Beach. Formerly owned by Center for Creative Education, the new PBO facility, which will be named by the foundation, boasts a variety of functional spaces that the company will use to create offices for administrative staff, host rehearsals and artist training sessions, store production materials, support education and community engagement programs, and produce diverse programming to further broaden the company’s artistic offerings alongside its annual mainstage season at the Kravis Center. The purchase of the building not only secures a permanent home for the company, but will also allow PBO to reach new audiences, connect and collaborate with the eclectic Northwood community, and deepen its commitment to providing impactful and unique programming to South Floridians.
As part of the multi-year gift, the foundation will also serve as a Production Underwriter in the company’s notable Co-Producer Society, annually funding a mainstage opera production, and will support PBO’s nationally recognized Apprentice Artist program – both for three years. The competitive artist training program offers 10 recent vocal graduates a five-month professional residency filled with intense coaching and training, performance opportunities, artistic study, and masterclasses with professionals in the field. The Apprentice Artists also perform in local education and community engagement concerts and in all mainstage production choruses.
“As we near the closing of PBO’s historic 60th Anniversary Season, and look back on the decades of company success, we are eager to dream bigger and plan for Palm Beach Opera’s bright future,” said PBO’s Chairman of the Board David Genser. “This transformative gift will help Palm Beach reach new artistic heights and ensure that world-class opera will continue to thrive in our community for years to come.”