Memories from the Summer

On September 30th, Opera Opulenza’s Community Opera Chorus joined Opulenza soloists at Cathedral Square for a special concert of opera favourites! This year, Opera Opulenza joined the Downtown Vancouver Business Improvement Association’s outdoor Perch Program to perform concerts throughout the summer.

Guest singers were: Tamar Simon, soprano, Pavol Simoncic, baritone, Thomas Lamont, tenor, Andy Greenwood, baritone, Trudy Chalmers, soprano, and the Opulenza Community Opera Chorus with piano accompaniment by Roger Parton

Monday, September 30th, 12pm to 1:30pm, Cathedral Square – 566 Richards St, Vancouver 

Christmas Concert at Marpole Community Centre Seniors’ Luncheon

Tuesday, November 26th – Opera Opulenza was invited to sing Christmas carols for the Marpole Oakridge Community Centre Seniors’ Luncheon to kick off the festive holidays. Performers were: Katie McCullough soprano, Thomas Lamont tenor, Trudy Chalmers soprano, and pianist Roger Parton.

Breathe, Move, Sing Workshop at Emily Carr University

Trudy Chalmers conducted a free workshop for the communities of Emily Carr University and Marpole on breathing, movement, and vocalization. No experience was necessary. We worked on breathing exercises, vocal exploration – speaking, humming, singing, screaming, and movement. We also sang and staged a selection from an opera chorus. The last portion of the workshop focused on singing in harmony with Sharon Bayly from Emily Carr University.

Friday, November 22, 4pm-6pm, Emily Carr University in the Rennie Hall – 520 East 1st Ave, Vancouver

Christmas Caroling at Marpole Museum Fundraiser

To help raise funds for the Marpole Museum, Opera Opulenza volunteered to carol at their annual Christmas Fair and Fundraiser at St. Augustine’s Anglican Church in Marpole. We chose costumes similar to what people wore in 1912, the year the Colbourne House was built, now the Marpole Museum. Performing were sopranos Katie McCullough, Trudy Chalmers, mezzo Nadine Cornelius, and pianist Roger Parton.

A Night of Opulence



Opera Opulenza presents A Night of Opulence, a concert of favourite opera duets and solos featuring soprano Tamar Simon, baritone Geoff Schellenberg, and pianist Roger Parton. They will be performing selections from Mozart’s Don Giovanni, Bizet’s The Pearl Fishers, Leoncavallo’s Pagliacci, and Donizetti’s Don Pasquale. All are welcome. There will be refreshments at intermission and the show is about 1 hour long. Sponsored by the Vancouver Park Board, and Emily Carr University of Art & Design.

Thursday, November 7th
8pm (doors open at 7:45pm)
The Moberly Arts & Cultural Centre
7646 Prince Albert St, Vancouver
Admission is free
To reserve seats email: 

Tamar Simon, soprano
Heralded for her “clear vibrant tone” (Opera Canada), Tamar Simon is an emerging Armenian-Canadian soprano embarking on a promising opera career. Based in Vancouver, Canada, Tamar was recently engaged with the Vancouver Opera Festival as the soprano soloist for their New Works Project. She also has sung with the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra as Valencienne in their Look of Love concert and with White Rock Concerts as Musetta in their production of La Bohème. In 2018, she also performed the role of Rosina in Burnaby Lyric Opera’s mainstage production of Il barbiere di Siviglia.
Tamar has also performed internationally, most recently as Zerlina in Hawaii Performing Arts Festival’s 2017 production of Don Giovanni. In 2016, Tamar continued her vocal and art song studies in Austria after receiving the Johann Strauss Foundation Scholarship, which sponsored study at the Internationale Sommerakademie Mozarteum under soprano Helen Donath and baritone Wolfgang Holzmair. Earlier that year, she traveled to Pilzen, Czech Republic and Nürnberg, Germany performing excerpts from La Bohème and Die Fledermaus.
Tamar was a District Winner of the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions in 2016. She is a graduate of University of British Columbia’s Master of Music program in opera performance, studying under Patrick Raftery and Nancy Hermiston. At UBC, she performed many leading roles, most notably the role of Susanna in Mozart’s Le nozze di Figaro where she was described as “believable and engaging Susanna, passing from innocence to subtlety to assertion, always in control and always the unrecognized protagonist” (Opera Canada). She was also seen as Tytania in Benjamin Britten’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Ciboletta in Eine Nacht in Venedig, and The Foreign Woman in The Consul.

Geoff Schellenberg, baritone
Praised for his “clarion tone” (Musical Toronto) and “impressive vocal colour” (Opera Canada), Canadian-American baritone Geoffrey Schellenberg is currently a Resident Artist with Portland
Opera. In the 2018-19 season, he performed the roles of Marchese D’Obigny in La traviata, Fiorello in Il barbiere di Siviglia, and Nardo in La finta giardiniera with Portland Opera, as well as Schaunard in La bohème with Vancouver Opera. He was engaged with Calgary Opera for their 2017-18 season as part of their Emerging Artist Development Program, performing as the Sergeant in Il barbiere di Siviglia, Captain in Eugene Onegin, and Sciarrone in Tosca in their mainstage productions. He also recently sang Morales in Carmen (Opera Kelowna), Marcello in La bohème (White Rock Concerts), and Belcore in L’elisir d’amore (Music Academy of the West). In the 2019-20 season, he will perform as Harlekin in Highland Opera Studio’s production of Ariadne auf Naxos, Amantio in Pacific Opera Victoria’s production of Il trittico, and will return to Portland Opera to perform as Ben, David, and Doctor Gregg in An American Quartet and as Charlie in Three Decembers.
Geoffrey has become a frequent performer around Vancouver, British Columbia. He has sung as a soloist with the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra, both as Captain in a concert performance of Candide and as Danilo in selections from The Merry Widow in their The Look of Love concert, and was the baritone soloist in the New Works Project for the inaugural Vancouver Opera Festival. He is regularly engaged with Burnaby Lyric Opera, having sung Sharpless in their mainstage production of Madama Butterfly as well as Belcore and Peter in their concert performances of L’elisir d’amore and Hansel and Gretel. Additionally, he has sung as a soloist in several oratorio concerts, including the Vancouver Bach Choir’s performances of A Sea Symphony (Vaughn Williams) and Requiem (Fauré), as well as Requiem (Duruflé) with St. Philips Choir and Wenceslas (Chilcott) with Jubilate Vocal Ensemble.
Geoffrey was the platinum prize winner in the first annual Vancouver International Music Competition, a prize winner in the 2016 Canadian Opera Company Centre Stage Competition, and a winner of the 2015 Western Canada District in the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions. He completed his Masters in Opera Performance at the University of British Columbia under the tutelage of Peter Barcza, performing many roles during his studies including Eugene Onegin in Eugene Onegin, Lescaut in Manon, Demetrius in A Midsummer Night’s Dream, and Count Almaviva in The Marriage of Figaro. Geoffrey has also participated in multiple productions overseas including Count Almaviva in The Marriage of Figaro with Accademia Europea dell’Opera in Lucca, Italy and Papageno in Die Zauberflöte with the European Music Academy in Teplice, Czech Republic.

Roger Parton, music director, pianist
Roger Parton studied composition under Wolfgang Bottenberg (Concordia University) and piano with Laurie Altman (Concordia University) and Alice Enns (UBC). He has extensive experience across the Lower Mainland as a répétiteur, and works as a principal coach and music arranger with City Opera Vancouver. Roger worked as rehearsal pianist and orchestral musician for the world premiere of Brian Current’s “Missing”. When not coaching singers, he composes.