The Beginning

Opera Queensland was incorporated as a Company Limited by Guarantee in June 1981 as The Lyric Opera of Queensland Limited (LOQ) with funding from the Queensland Government as ‘a company for the presentation of performances of opera, light opera and music theatre’.

 

1981/1982

Lyric Opera of Queensland incorporated.
First season at Her Majesty's Theatre,
Brisbane: Iolanthe, La Belle Helene, Il trovatore, Cosi fan tutte.

 

1985/86

Move to Lyric Theatre in newly-opened QPAC.
Merivale Street premises purchased.
Season: The Marriage ofFigaro, Orpheus in the Underworld,
Aida.

1982

  • A Gala Night of Song (Concert)
  • Iolanthe by Gilbert & Sullivan
  • La Belle Hélène by Offenbach
  • Il trovatore by Verdi
  • Così fan tutte by Mozart

1983

  • Fidelio by Beethoven
  • The Merry Widow by Lehár
  • The Flying Dutchman by Wagner (Concert Version)
  • Faust by Gounod (Concert Version)
  • The Creation by Haydn (Concert)
  • Cavalleria rusticana/Pagliacci by Mascagni/Leoncavallo
  • Strauss Beneath the Stars (Concert)

1984

  • The Glory of Opera (Concert)
  • The Daughter of the Regiment by Donizetti (Concert)

1985

  • The Marriage of Figaro by Mozart
  • Aida by Verdi
  • Orpheus in the Underworld by Offenbach

1986

  • La bohème by Puccini
  • The Barber of Seville by Rossini
  • Rigoletto by Verdi

1987

Regional Touring and Young Artist Program established.

 

1992/93

Two landmark productions: Opera Queensland’s first Australian opera, Koehne's Love Burns at La Boite; Barrie Kosky directs Stravinsky’s Oedipus Rex for the 1993 Brisbane Biennale

1987

  • La traviata by Verdi
  • Don Pasquale by Donizetti
  • The Student Prince by Romberg
  • Madama Butterfly by Puccini
  • Verdi Requiem (Concert)

1988

  • Aida by Verdi
  • Die Fledermaus by Strauss (Concert)
  • Tosca by Puccini
  • The Gondoliers by Gilbert & Sullivan

1989

  • Salome by R. Strauss
  • The Abduction from the Seraglio by Mozart
  • Carmen by Bizet
  • Broadway Melody (Concert)
  • Donald Smith Gala Concert

1990

  • The Flying Dutchman by Wagner
  • Broadway Melody (Concert)
  • Il trovatore by Verdi
  • La bohème by Puccini

1991

  • Faust by Gounod
  • A Tribute to Mozart (Concert)
  • La traviata by Verdi
  • The Pearl Fishers by Bizet

1992

  • The Barber of Seville by Rossini
  • Rossini Gala (Concert)
  • Love Burns by Koehne
  • Don Giovanni by Mozart
  • Madama Butterfly by Puccini
  • 10th Anniversary Gala (Concert)

1993

  • Oedipus Rex by Stravinsky
  • Lucia di Lammermoor by Donizetti
  • Broadway Melody (Concert)
  • Così fan tutte by Mozart
The Force of Destiny by Verdi

1994/95

1994 activities included Opera Queensland's first venture into commercial theatre with Esgee Entertainment and QPAC in the presentation of The Pirates of Penzance.
Since 1995, LOQ/OQ has presented 11 of the 15 Opera Conference productions commissioned to date.

First schools’ opera, Aesop’s Fables, co-production of Eugene Onegin with Victoria State Opera and first Opera Conference production, Falstaff.

Opera Queensland celebrates its name change and relocation to new South Bank premises with a new production of Don Giovanni which then tours regional Queensland.

1994

  • Teresa Berganza (Concert; presented in association with Andrew McKinnon & ABC Fine Music)
  • Rigoletto by Verdi
  • The Pirates of Penzance by Gilbert & Sullivan (Presented in association with Essgee Melodies)
  • Eugene Onegin by Tchaikovsky
  • The Marriage of Figaro by Mozart
  • An Evening With Jeffrey Black (Concert)
  • Stars of Australian Opera (Concert; presented in association with NARPACA)

1995

  • Victoria de Los Angeles (Concert; presented in association with Andrew McKinnon)
  • Tosca by Puccini
  • Love is in the Air (Concert; presented in association with Queensland Arts Council)
  • The Secret Garden by Simon & Norman (Presented in association with John Frost and Queensland Performing Arts Trust)
  • Carmen by Bizet
  • The Magic Flute by Mozart
In 1996 the company changed its name to Opera Queensland and relocated its offices and rehearsal studio into new, purpose-built premises in the Queensland Conservatorium Griffith University at South Bank. Since 1996 the company’s annual program has included a production presented in the Conservatorium Theatre.

1997

Young Artist Program re-established.

1998

Season of Fledermaus, Faust, The Elixir of Love, and Handel's Julius Caesar.
Opera Queensland supported by a special funding allocation by the State Government.

1996

  • Yvonne Kenny & Leslie Howard In Concert (Presented in association with Andrew McKinnon)
  • Otello by Verdi
  • Hansel & Gretel by Humperdinck
  • Don Giovanni by Mozart
  • Turandot by Puccini
  • Classic Chorus Concert

1997

  • Samson et Dalila by Saint-Saëns
  • La bohème by Puccini
  • Don Pasquale by Donizetti (Regional tour of this production presented in association with Queensland Arts Council)
  • Falstaff by Verdi

1998

  • Fledermaus by J. Strauss
  • Faust by Gounod
  • The Elixir of Love by Donizetti
  • Julius Caesar by Handel

1999

  • Madama Butterfly by Puccini
  • Coro Magnifico! (Concert)
  • Just for You (Concert; presented in association with Queensland Arts Council)
  • The Barber of Seville by Rossini
  • La traviata by Verdi
  • The Last Concert of the Millennium (Concert)
In 2001 the Federal Government joined the Queensland Government to support the Company’s core program following the implementation of recommendations of the Major Performing Arts Inquiry.

2000

Bryn Terfel concert (produced by IMG and Harlequin in association with Opera Queensland).

2001

Centenary of Federation World Première of Stephen Leek’s Seeking True South.

2000

  • Il trovatore by Verdi
  • Celestial Reflections (Concert)
  • Così fan tutte by Mozart
  • Bryn Terfel (Concert; produced by IMG and Harlequin in association with Opera Queensland)
  • The Mikado by Gilbert & Sullivan

2001

  • Elysian Visions (Concert)
  • The Magic Flute by Mozart
  • The Heartland Tour (Concert; presented in association with Queensland Arts Council)
  • Coro Magnifico! II (Concert)
  • Rigoletto by Verdi (Produced by OzOpera; presented by arrangement with Opera Australia)
  • Seeking True South by Leek
  • The Pearl Fishers by Bizet
In April 2002, the Company piloted its Moving Opera! program with students from Brisbane State High School. This in-school residency vocal and drama workshop enables students to work with industry professionals in a program that introduces them to the world of music theatre and supports the curriculum whilst building their personal confidence and presentation skills.

2002

Opera Queensland celebrates two decades with Cavalleria rusticana, Pagliacci, Andrea Chénier and Rossini's Cinderella and concert performances of The Damnation of Faust and a Renée Fleming recital. First Moving Opera! program.

2003

Verdi Requiem concert (presented in association with The Queensland Orchestra). Sondheim's Sweeney Todd.

2002

  • The Damnation of Faust by Berlioz (Concert)
  • Renée Fleming in Recital (Concert; presented by IMG in association with Opera Queensland)
  • Cavalleria rusticana/Pagliacci by Mascagni/Leoncavallo
  • Cinderella by Rossini
  • Andrea Chénier by Giordano

2003

  • Verdi Requiem (Concert; presented in association with The Queensland Orchestra)
  • Tosca by Puccini
  • Don Giovanni by Mozart
  • Moonlight, Mozart & the Movies (Concert; presented in association with Queensland Arts Council)
  • Sweeney Todd by Sondheim

2007

Opera Queensland, QPAC and QMF collaborate with Perth International Arts Festival, West Australian Opera and Victorian Opera to present the World Première season of Richard Mills’ The Love of the Nightingale.

2004

  • Bryn Terfel in Recital (Concert; presented by IMG and International Concert Attractions in association with Opera Queensland)
  • Carmen by Bizet
  • The Creation by Haydn (Concert; presented in association with Queensland Conservatorium Griffith University)
  • Don Pasquale by Donizetti
  • The Food of Love (Concert)
  • A Masked Ball by Verdi

2005

  • La bohème by Puccini
  • The Turn of the Screw by Benjamin Britten
  • The Marriage of Figaro by Mozart
  • Strike up the Chorus! (Concert; presented in association with Australian Army Band Brisbane)
  • The Food of Love (Concert; Regional Tour presented in association with Queensland Arts Council)
  • Barker, Coleman-Wright and Lane in Recital (Concert; presented by Musica Viva Australia in association with Opera Queensland)

2006

  • Romeo and Juliet by Gounod
  • Die Fledermaus by Strauss
  • Lucia di Lammermoor by Donizetti
  • Die Fledermaus (Regional Tour)
  • Porgy and Bess by Gershwin (Presented by Living Arts, Inc and Andrew McKinnon Presentations in association with Opera Queensland)
  • Yvonne Kenny, A Touch of Venus (Concert; presented by Musica Viva Australia in association with Opera Queensland)

2007

  • Madama Butterfly by Puccini
  • Hansel and Gretel by Humperdinck
  • The Love of the Nightingale by Mills (A co-production of the UWA Perth International Arts Festival, WA Opera, Queensland Music Festival, Opera Queensland, QPAC and Victorian Opera)
  • Nabucco by Verdi
  • The Food of Love (Concert; Regional Tour presented in association with Queensland Arts Council)

2008

Highpoint of Opera Queensland’s subscription sales history; The Barber of Seville, The Magic Flute and Turandot.

2009

Opera Queensland Chorus and QSO recording, Opera’s Greatest Choruses, sits in second spot on the classical charts for eight consecutive weeks. Dirty Apple, created in collaboration with 14 young artists and Backbone Youth Arts performed at the Powerhouse.

2008

  • The Barber of Seville by Rossini
  • The Magic Flute by Mozart
  • Turandot by Puccini
  • The Magic Flute (Regional Tour)
  • Barker, Coleman-Wright and Lane in Recital (Concert; presented by Musica Viva Australia in association with Opera Queensland)

2009

  • La traviata by Verdi
  • Fidelio by Beethoven
  • Rigoletto by Verdi
  • David Hobson and Teddy Tahu Rhodes in Recital (Concert; presented by Andrew McKinnon in association with Opera Queensland)
  • Dirty Apple (An Opera Queensland production in collaboration with Backbone Youth Arts and co-produced by Q150, Queensland Music Festival, Queensland Conservatorium, Griffith University and Queensland Performing Arts Centre)
  • Waltzing our Matilda (Brisbane performances and Regional Tour)

2011

Following the announcement in 2011 of a return to Brisbane of regular annual seasons by Opera Australia, the Opera Queensland Board and the Company's funding agencies implemented a change and transformation agenda for Opera Queensland including “the development and articulation of a new strategic vision for the company”.

2012

Opera Australia’s first Brisbane season in 24 years. Ten year anniversary of Moving Opera! Sold out season of The Mikado.

2010

  • The Elixir of Love by Donizetti
  • The Merry Widow by Lehár
  • Aida by Verdi
  • The Merry Widow (Regional Tour)

2011

  • The Girl of the Golden West (La fanciulla del West) by Puccini
  • Così fan tutte by Mozart
  • Tosca by Puccini
  • Andreas Scholl (Concert; presented by Musica Viva in association with Opera Queensland)
  • Waltzing Our Matilda (Brisbane performance and Regional Tour)
  • David Hobson and Teddy Tahu Rhodes in Concert (Concert; presented by Andrew McKinnon in association with Opera Queensland)

2012

  • Macbeth by Verdi (Concert)
  • The Mikado by Gilbert and Sullivan (Brisbane performance and Regional Tour)
  • Carmen by Bizet

2013

First season under new Artistic Director Lindy Hume. A year of partnerships with companies including Camerata of St John’s, New Zealand Opera, and Dancenorth.

2014

Launch of Project Puccini - a world-first initiative by Opera Queensland, giving hundreds of Queenslanders in eight regional centres the opportunity to perform in the chorus of a brand new production of Puccini's La bohème.

2013

  • St Matthew Passion by Bach
  • Cinderella, or Goodness Triumphant by Rossini
  • Otello by Verdi
  • Abandon (new collaboration between OperaQ Studio and Dancenorth. Premiered in Townsville)
  • Waltzing our Matilda (Regional Tour)
  • Opera at Jimbour (with Queensland Music Festival)
  • Opera on the Riverstage (with Brisbane Festival) 

2014

  • Rigoletto by Verdi
  • La bohème by Puccini (Brisbane performances and Regional Tour)
  • The Perfect American by Glass
  • Abandon (as part of World Theatre Festival 2014)