Operation Opera

Operation Opera is an avant-garde community outreach program in the Commonwealth of Virginia that delivers a variety of dynamic, in-depth presentations to a wide diversity of groups throughout the state – at no cost to them!

"We just want you to know that we heard Dr. Glenn Winters lecture on this opera at ESCC last Friday and were inspired to purchase tickets and bring along friends. He is wonderful at what he does."
-Duke and Joyce Shannahan

"Opera, just like great films, drama, literature, fine arts and even sports, makes us feel truly alive by allowing us to experience larger-than-life events," says Glenn Winters, Virginia Opera's Community Outreach Musical Director. "My aim is that Operation Opera will allow adults of all backgrounds and interests to connect with this life-affirming effect."

Part of the largest opera education program in America, Operation Opera presented over 180 free programs last season, reaching more than 80,000 (including radio and television appearances) audience members! Topics of the high-energy presentations, which are geared toward adults ranging from college students to senior citizens, include explorations into Virginia Opera's season productions, basic opera primers and topics tailored to specialized interests of particular groups and clubs.

Operation Opera continues to take to the airwaves via partnerships with public radio stations throughout the regions served by Virginia Opera. Glenn's insights on each mainstage production are aired as one-hour broadcasts on WHRO-FM in Norfolk and WCVE-FM in Richmond. Glenn Winters presents in Northern Virginia as well as Hampton Roads and Central Virginia.

"Like the old adage - You don't have to be an opera buff to love Glenn Winters, but you may turn into one!"
-Univ. of Richmond Life Long Living Institute


Call 757-627-9545 ext. 3304 to schedule or learn more

Is your group made up of opera beginners? Opera lovers? Opera experts? No matter who you have in your group, one of these presentations is sure to fit the bill:

Opera for People Who Don't Like Opera

A humorous, insightful and interactive introduction to the art form.

Season Preview

An overview of the upcoming Virginia Opera season.

In-depth Preview

A detailed look at any individual production of your choice - book one or book all four.

Custom Presentations

Available upon request!


Opera relates to a wide range of academic subjects. Consider a guest lecture for high school or college classes such as these:

    • American History
    • European History
    • Seminars
    • Music Appreciation
    • Music History
    • Women's Studies
    • African-American Studies
    • Literature
    • Theatre Fraternities/Sororities
    • American History
    • European History
    • Honors

"We're season subscribers to Virginia Opera, and enjoy Glenn's pre-performance talks almost as much as the operas themselves (and once or twice, even more...). Even if you think you absolutely hate opera, his discussions alone are worth the price of admission. After his talk last night at George Mason, I heard a woman go up to him and tell him she had never been to one of his talks before, and that she had loved it.

And like opera, actually being there for one of his talks is even more enjoyable than just hearing it over the radio. He's physically just as engaging as aurally – the exact opposite of the stodgy, proper, and pompous music professor you would expect.

And his talks are not just for beginners or people who think they hate opera. He did a talk before a performance of "Carmen" a few years ago. I went in there thinking there was no way he could possibly tell me anything about the opera I didn't already know. Boy, was I wrong."
-Bernie Gilbert

"A heartfelt 'thank you' for your wonderful program. Our group enjoyed it hugely. I really believe we have made some converts to grand opera!"
-Kay Wagner, Duck Wood Country Club Women's Association

Visit the OPERATION OPERA Blog for more information on Lifelong Learning Classes!