Opera-tunity Foundation holds reception to promote the arts

Opera-tunity Board

By Karamie Sullivan

There are many artistic people living the Midlands area, and one of them is doing everything she can to make sure the performing arts continues to thrive in Columbia.

Janet Hopkins, a former singer at the New York Metropolitan Opera, held a reception at her residence Sunday afternoon for the Opera-tunity Foundation. This nonprofit organization was created by Hopkins in 2011, and exists to help support a strong classical music community in South Carolina.

There are eight other board members who help support the organization. All members welcomed the crowd into Hopkins’ home for the reception, and after about an hour there was a presentation, followed by a performance.

Hopkins said that Opera-tunity will soon be launching a new arts-related project this year, following a meeting with Mayor Steve Benjamin this month. “I can’t tell you much about it yet, but I can tell you it is going to be a spectacular event for the community as a whole,” she said.

According to Hopkins, it will be very community oriented and arts oriented at the same time. The organization’s overall objective is to help establish a performance facility in the Columbia area to ensure that the city has an acoustic venue for classical and artistic presentations.

Midway Elementary School’s music teacher Jaston Hawes brought five of his students to perform at the reception. Hawes is also one of the board members for the organization.

“We are so happy he could bring some of his kids to show us what music is doing for them in our schools,” said Hopkins. After the students finished performing, Hopkins was asked to perform herself.

The positive response Opera-tunity has received, along with the continual growth this organization has experienced since 2011 has been very rewarding for

Hopkins. “It’s been amazing to watch it grow,” she said. “It started just with a passion.” This year, more people have already come on board to support the foundation, and 90% of the profits created from their on-going events go back to the community. “We are always looking for more board members, volunteers, advisors, and anyone who is just willing to open a door,” said Hopkins. To become involved in the organization, you can email operatunitySC@gmail.com.

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