Dr. Joshua Wentz moved to Los Angeles in 2016 to take a position as a music professor at Los Angeles Mission College, a Hispanic-serving institution of higher learning, in Sylmar. Almost immediately, he realized that the students coming into his music classes from the NE San Fernando Valley were seriously lacking in musical background, experience, and education. He wondered why students over the years were coming to college less prepared and struggling to do well academically. After some research, he realized that most of the feeder schools in and around Sylmar didn't have strong music programs — many had no music programs at ALL!
This was a major factor that helped Wentz realize the need for music education in the SFV and led to the creation of Mission Opera. This lack of music education, paired with the absence of performance opportunities and hands-on training for community college students, helped the realization that Mission Opera could target and help multiple disadvantaged communities. Mission Opera is a performing arts education nonprofit who produces 3-4 full, mainstage operas each year. Also, our Boxtop Opera Educational Outreach program serves part of our mission to go into low-funded schools in and around LA to teach children about opera and classical music, through live performances with three singers, a pianist and a sound tech with a "box" of props and costume pieces. During the COVID-19 pandemic, we had various types of instrumental and vocal music online programs and went into over a dozen local schools to assist teachers in teaching music - a hard-to-covert discipline - during the pandemic.
Unfortunately, since COVID, our ticket sales have plummeted. We were in jeopardy of folding, due to the circumstances surrounding this virus, but we are not giving up yet. Instead, we're turning to foundations, grantors, corporate sponsors, and private donors like YOU who believe in our mission and want to see more high-level performances in San Fernando and Santa Clarita, and who believe in improving education for minority students in LA.
To help us survive and thrive, please consider making a tax-deductible donation, of ANY amount, today!