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Season Ticket Sales Exceed Goal

November 20, 2006

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    November 20, 2006
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    Opera Carolina News

Season Ticket Sales Exceed Goal

Charlotte, NC – More people are planning to attend the opera this year as Opera Carolina's 2006/2007 subscription sales increased 6% exceeding last season's totals by $25,000, including 320 new subscriptions. "We attribute this increase in sales to the popularity of this season's repertoire and to the growing recognition Opera Carolina is receiving as the leading professional opera company in the Carolinas," said Emily Smith, Opera Carolina Board Chairman. The surge in subscriptions may also reflect Opera Carolina's unique flexible mini-subscription plan, which allows opera "flex subscribers" to create their own 2-show or 3-show mini-series and still receive all the subscriber benefits: subscriber-only customer service, guaranteed seats, single ticket discounts, and prepaid parking.

The mission of Opera Carolina is to inspire and entertain the region's diverse community, attracting a broader demographic and bringing opera to new audiences through outreach programs and other successful operas, like last season's hit performance of Margaret Garner. "We are pleased with our subscription sales reports, and equally proud to announce that attendance by Charlotte's diverse communities has increased substantially over the last three seasons," said James Meena, General Director & Principal Conductor. "In 2001, diverse audiences comprised less than 2% of the opera audience; in 2006 more than 11% of the audience came from Charlotte's Asian, Latino and African American communities," Meena continued.

Opera Carolina's opening production of Madama Butterfly, which ran October 26th thru the 29th, enjoyed full houses at all performances. The two leading sopranos, Kallen Esperian and Cynthia Lawrence, dazzled audiences with their impassioned portrayals of the young geisha, Butterfly, and complemented composer Giacomo Puccini's famous score with their radiant voices.

The upcoming performances also promise to excite audiences, including the holiday favorite, Amahl and the Night Visitors, held in the McGlohon Theater at Spirit Square December 15 and 16, and Opera Carolina's first ever Spanish opera, La Vida Breve, paired as a double bill with Pagliacci, which will be performed January 25, 27 and 28 in the Belk Theater. The season will conclude with Verdi's tragedy Rigoletto, performing March 1, 3, and 4, and Gilbert and Sullivan's comic masterpiece, The Pirates of Penzance, April 12, 14, and 15. Ticket sales and subscription information is available online at operacarolina.org or by calling 704-332-7177, extension 210.

Founded in 1948 as the Charlotte Opera Association by a small group of volunteers, Opera Carolina today is the largest professional opera company in the Carolinas with an operating budget of over $3.5 million. The mission of Opera Carolina is to inspire and entertain the region's diverse community through the presentation of excellent Opera, Operetta, Music Theater, and Education & Outreach programs that elevate the quality of life in the Carolinas. Opera Carolina is a community resource with a commitment to artistic excellence and community service.

Opera Carolina is supported by the Arts & Science Council-Charlotte/Mecklenburg, Inc., The North Carolina Arts Council, an agency funded by the state of North Carolina, and the National Endowment for the Arts. Opera Carolina is a member of OPERA America.

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2006/2007 Season Media Sponsors include Time Warner Cable, The Charlotte Observer, and NBC6 WCNC-TV.