Last night’s 13th edition of the Canadian Opera Company’s iconic fundraiser gala Operanation did what it does best and brought the house down.
The event’s theme “A Night of Curiosities” manifested over three storeys of the Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts where guests were invited to imbibe mysterious elixers, delight in a secret donut room, and even take a glimpse into the future at a fortune-telling station.
In keeping with Operanation tradition, the night’s main musical performance was a spirited blend of pop and opera with the Juno award-winning artist Kiesza singing her heart out alongside mezzo-soprano Lauren Eberwein and tenor Charles Sy.
A sweetly set up photo booth proved to be the night’s big winner with a near-constant line up that, at times, threatened to overtake the entire third floor. Guests were chomping at the bit to get their outrageous outfits on camera as the theme of curiosity was not only relegated to the event itself, but to the guests as well. And most of the night’s 1,000 guests dressed to impress. Among the crowd, we spotted a Marie-Antoinette-inspired wig, a necklace molded to resemble a human spine, multiple bejeweled headpieces, and even a gent in a suit styled, seemingly, from the 1800s, top hat included.
At once the official signifier of an entire summer full of fabulous parties, Operanation also serves to raise hundreds of thousands of dollars for the COC’s Ensemble Studio, an important program for Canada’s rising opera stars.