Sunday June 9, 2024

06:00 PM - 9:00 pm

Opera Saratoga kicks off its 2024 summer “Season of Winners” with a fabulous, ultra-glam gala, hosted at Saratoga Springs’ historic Canfield Casino in Congress Park. Part of Saratoga’s “Belmont on Broadway” six day event, this Monte Carlo-inspired event should not be missed! Visit www.operasaratoga.org/gala2024 to purchase tickets.


Saturday, June 9, 2024, 6-9 PM


Canfield Casino in Congress Park

1 East Congress Street

Saratoga Springs, NY 12866

Gala tickets start at only $175 for first-time attendees!

I urge you to make a profound investment in our community by backing Opera Saratoga and championing exceptional art” says Board President Steve Rosenblum, “Your support enables us not only to maintain our tradition of producing top-tier operas and musicals, showcasing new works, and featuring some of the nation’s finest singers, but also to continue investing in the community through initiatives like our Educational Tour. This program brings the gift of music to thousands of young children each year. Furthermore, our Opera Saratoga Songs by Heart initiative spreads joy to individuals with Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia.”

Returning to Canfield Casino, Opera Saratoga brings this evening of thrilling table games, live auctions, silent auctions and raffles, and copious food and drink to fans of opera and musical theater throughout the Capital Region and beyond.

The evening’s entertainment will feature music from the Festival Artists of the company’s 2024 season, and a special performance from Mikaela Bennett (Guys and Dolls’ Sarah Brown). In addition, there will be a live Sotheby’s-style auction, with a vast array of items to bid on, including vacation get-aways, Metropolitan Opera tickets, cooking classes, tickets to local concerts, and much more! Come experience the thrill of a live auction with auctioneer and emcee, Tom Stebbins.

The annual Opera Gala stands as the opera’s most significant fundraiser of the year. Place your bets on Opera Saratoga, ensuring that it persists in delivering inspiration, healing, and education through the power of music. The odds are undeniably in your favor!

Additional information:

The Gala’s Special Honoree is Ellen Jabbur

Ellen Jabbur has been a longtime supporter of the arts in the Capital District. Originally from Denmark, she developed a love of music from an early age. Ellen and her late husband, Dr. Munir Jabbur, enjoyed opera, vocal, and classical music, and have supported many local organizations. In addition to providing philanthropic support, Ellen has been a huge advocate for Opera Saratoga, helping the company make connections and form partnerships with other organizations and individuals throughout the Capital region, and in Albany, specifically, where she serves on a number of boards. At Opera Saratoga, Ellen most recently served on the selection committee for our new General & Artistic Director. We are incredibly grateful to Ellen for all of her support, and for being such an active and enthusiastic member of our Board of Directors.

Special Thanks to Peter Haley & Ro Rosen

Professor Peter Haley, M.S., former board member of Opera Saratoga, is retired from Siena College as a professor of music. He began his musical career at age 10 as a church organist, barely able to reach the pedals. This continued for six decades as music director, organist, and choir director for several churches in the Capital District of New York. While at Siena, Peter taught in several subdisciplines of music, including his most intensive love, opera. He led multiple USO tours internationally and twice was hired as Chorus Master for Saratoga Opera (then Lake George Opera) and was Assistant Conductor for Capital Hill Choral Society. Peter also led one of the largest independent opera clubs in the nation, the Siena Opera Club (not affiliated with any single opera house) taking hundreds and hundreds or opera goers to performances throughout the world. Folks, he still sings!

Rosemarie V. Rosen (Ro) spent over thirty five years in various NYS agencies in management and administrative roles. She is a long time Opera Saratoga supporter going as far back as the Adirondack Community College and Queensbury High School days, eventually becoming a board member. Ro served as the president of the OS board from 2015 to 2021, a time of significant transition and development for us. Ro has also been active in leadership roles in a variety of organizations in the Capital District including the Albany Institute of History and Art, Capital Rep Theatre and the Center for Disability Services. In 2021, the Albany University Alumni Association recognized Ro with the award for Excellence in Community Service. Ro has recently left the Capital District to be closer to family. She continues as a Guild member and supporter of Opera Saratoga.

Remembering Martha Strohl

Despite growing up in a home filled with bulky sets of 78 rpm recordings of every warhorse extant, Martha Strohlowed her adult love of opera to New York State, specifically SUNY Purchase and the PepsiCo summer fest. In the late 1980s they produced, among other things, a minimum of two operas each July. Peter Sellars’ production of The Marriage of Figaro set in Trump Tower, and Così fan tutte in Despina’s roadside diner, convinced her of the relevance of opera to a contemporary audience. For the next 20 years, Martha was a frequent ticket buyer at the Met. Fast forward to 2000, when she and her husband Tom retired and moved to Saratoga. With lowered expectations, they purchased tickets to Opera Saratoga and were surprised and delighted by the quality of performance, casting, and the intimacy of the Spa Little Theater. After that, Martha never looked back.

Martha was a passionate advocate for Opera Saratoga for over 20 years! Her philanthropic leadership not only allowed Opera Saratoga to increase opportunities for emerging operatic artists to hone their talents, but also helped to inspire greater support throughout the community. Her calm and steady hand throughout the pandemic was a beacon of stability during that difficult time. Martha is greatly missed by all of her “family” at Opera Saratoga and we dedicate a portion of this year’s gala program to her memory.

Gala Committee Members

Bart Altamari, Jeff Altamari, Lawrence Barasic, Edye Benson, Francesca Bruno, Susanne Buhac, Ann Bullock, Robert Bullock, Anthony Cirillo, Trieste Cordova, Maria Harrison, Donene Honnold, Mary Huber, Holly Katz, Leo Kellogg, Judy Killeen, Deborah Lee, Nina Lockwood, William Lynch, Carol Markley, Mary Frances Miller, Jason Morrill, Kathleen Nolte, Jack Norton, Susi Ritzenberg, Daniel Senecoff, Anthony Smokovich

Gala Chair: Steve Rosenblum

Music Direction: Laurie Rogers

Stage Direction: Helen Park

If you are interested in learning more about Opera Saratoga’s 2024 season, visit www.operasaratoga.org.

Sunday June 09, 2024

6:00 pm - 9:00 pm


Cover: $175.00

Opera Saratoga announces 2024 Gala at Canfield Casino: A Sure Bet!