Recent News & Press

JAN 22 2019

Mini interviews with the Carmen artists at Opera Carolina

The excellent Opera Carolina is currently presenting a run of Carmen, and Opera Lively briefly interviewed the four main singers. Consult for tickets and more information.  Questions by Luiz Gazzola. Copy...

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JAN 21 2019

REPEATS 1/24: Slow to Ignite, Opera Carolina’s New Carmen Ultimately Sizzles, Sparked by a Spitfire Soprano

The relationship between Opera Carolina and Carmen is very much like the pivotal relationship Georges Bizet's masterpiece depicts between Corporal Don José and the wily, seductive, dancing, smuggling, freedom-loving cigarette gi...

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JAN 21 2019

La ópera Carmen regresa a Charlotte con la fuerza de un clásico y un toque español

Un clásico de la ópera y todo un ícono feminista Carmen, regresa a los escenarios de Charlotte con una vistosa producción de Opera Carolina. Carmen es una obra dramática ofrecida en cuatro actos con música del compositor francés...

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JAN 21 2019

The Soprano: Alyson Cambridge’s range paves way to ‘Carmen’ lead Singer lands top role in Opera Carolina production

Alyson Cambridge never expected to portray Carmen. George Bizet’s iconic opera of the same name features a score written for a mezzo-soprano. Cambridge did not foresee staring in the lead as a possibility, as she sings soprano. However, the evo...

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JAN 21 2019

She was the first opera singer to perform at the Soul Train Awards, now she’s starring in Opera Carolina’s ‘Carmen’

Now that I’m older, wiser and possess a slightly longer attention span, it seems worthwhile to give opera another try. I grew up loving the performing arts, specifically musical theater, but I always stopped short of venturing into opera. Although...

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JAN 16 2019

She’s Carmen in Charlotte, but this New York opera star’s got range to spare

Soprano Alyson Cambridge takes a moment from rehearsal for "Carmen" at Opera Carolina to talk about diversity on the stage. By Mitchell Kearney | Stephanie Bunao As Carmen in Opera Carolina’s second show of the season (Jan....

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JAN 15 2019

Women making a difference in the Charlotte community

Opera Carolina continues its 2018/2019 spotlight on revolutionary heroines, bringing to life what’s been hailed as the most famous opera of all time, Carmen, beginning January 19. Carmen is a four-act romantic tragedy from the 1800s...

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JAN 15 2019

Ready to give opera a try? Start with Carmen. Here’s how to do it.

This post is brought to you in partnership with Opera Carolina. All opinions are our own.  2019 is your year to shake those excuses, tackle your bucket list and try something new. If you’ve never experienced the opera, you are in...

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JAN 9 2019

Opera Carolina Brings Beloved Carmen Back to Charlotte

“LOVE IS a rebellious bird that nobody can tame,” George Bizet’s uber-heroine, Carmen, muses in Habanera, perhaps the most well-known aria ever performed. Whether it is love, lust, or an illicit combination, Carmen, opera’s most...

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Opera Carolina Media Package

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The images on this page are to be used for publicity/press purposes for Opera Carolina’s productions only. Publication must include the photographer and Opera company credit as listed below. These images are not to be used for advertising purposes. Any other use must be granted by the photographer. If you wish to contact the photographer(s), please contact Megan Miller at 704.332.7177 x102 or click here to email.

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CURRENT SEASON images coming soon

  • Cryano de Bergerac
  • Rigoletto
  • The Marriage of Figaro
  • I Dream

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Fast Facts About Opera Carolina


Founded in 1948 by the Charlotte Music Club as a small group of dedicated volunteers, who believed opera performances would enrich the community, and with a budget of $125, Opera Carolina has grown from these humble beginnings into the largest professional opera company in the Carolinas with an operating budget of $2.8 million.

Opera Carolina is a member of OPERA America, Inc., and receives funds from the Arts & Science Council/Charlotte-Mecklenburg, National Endowment for the Arts, and the North Carolina Arts Council.

Opera Carolina — a community resource with a commitment to artistic excellence and community service.

James Meena — General Director & Principal Conductor

Board of Directors

  • Co-Chair: Stephen Philipson, U.S. Bancorp Investments, Inc.
  • Co-Chair: Laura Philipson, Arts Advocate
  • Vice Chair: Afredo Gatto, The Hearst Corporation
  • Vice Chair: Beth E. Hansen, UTC Aerospace Systems
  • Vice Chair: Laura Meyer Wellman, Honorary Consul of France
  • Secretary: Daryl Hollnagel, Shumaker, Loop & Kendrick
  • Treasurer: Mary Shelton Rose, PricewaterhouseCoopers
  • Assistant Treasurer: Charles T. Greer, GreerWalker, LLP
  • Immediate Past Co-Chair: Rob Engel, Wells Fargo Securities
  • Immediate Past Co-Chair: Mary Engel, Queens University of Charlotte


Bravo! Young Professionals
  • BRAVO! is Opera Carolina’s premier group for young professionals interested in exploring and enhancing their enjoyment of Charlotte’s vibrant performing arts scene.
  • Members enjoy an After-Party at Blue Restaurant & Bar (Saturday night performances), BRAVO! Members-Only events, and E-newsletters.
The Opera Guild of Charlotte
  • The Opera Guild has awarded over 149 Scholarships since it began its Scholarship Program in 1969.
  • The Opera Guild has donated more than $1 million dollars to Opera Carolina.
  • The Opera Guild supports the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions for North Carolina and sponsors a Vocal Competition Scholarship Program at UNC Charlotte.


The mission of Opera Carolina is to elevate the quality of life throughout the region’s diverse communities through the presentation of excellent Opera and Education programs.


Opera Carolina is the largest and oldest opera company in the Carolinas, headquartered in Charlotte.

Annual audience (excluding broadcasts):
  • Grand Opera: 15,000+
  • Education programs: 40,000+ (NC, SC & GA counties)
  • 90% of the artists, technicians and administrators of Opera Carolina live in greater Charlotte.
  • Since 1971, Opera Carolina has been nationally recognized for its commitment to arts education.
  • 40% of the Opera audience travels from the outside of Mecklenburg County to attend performances.

Education & Outreach Programs

Opera Xpress
  • The 2017/18 touring production is The Billy Goats Gruff.
  • Learning Guides meet the National Common Core standards in Language Arts and Math, and NC Essential curriculum standards for History, Music, Theater, and more to help teachers and students prepare for Opera Xpress.
first Night at the Opera
  • Public, private, and home school students attend the final dress rehearsal for Opera Carolina main stage productions.
  • 1,500+ students attended in FY2016.
The Opera Carolina Academy
  • The Opera Carolina Academy provides professional instruction and training in classical singing, music drama, acting and movement with the region’s leading artists and teachers.
Master Classes
  • Master Classes and clinics with Opera Carolina principal artists and resident company members are available to regional high schools and universities throughout the Opera season. Check the ‘events’ tab for upcoming dates or send us a message to schedule one.

Media & Press Contact

Megan Miller
Director of Marketing