Update: Laura Spencer at KCUR released a piece on the opening, click to read or listen.
Today we hosted friends and supporters for a special grand opening celebration of the new Lyric Opera Center.
With the opening of our new home, we saw an opportunity to honor select individuals whose support and commitment to the Company is unparalleled. Their unique contributions have helped not only to preserve our past, but will now ensure the future of the Company.
Through their lead gift to the capital campaign, Michael and Ginger Frost enabled us to leverage additional donor support, allowing us to receive the Mabee Foundation grant which led the way to complete the funding for the production arts building. Further, Michael is dedicated to continued and ongoing maintenance support for the Opera facilities with the Building Reserve Fund. Ginger’s support of the high school honors program in our educational and outreach programs has helped create the next generation of talented artists and new audiences. What a fitting tribute for the future program participants to train in the production arts building. It is also fitting that the production building be named the Michael and Ginger Frost Production Arts Building.
Beth Ingram has been with the Company since the its inception. She represents our beginning and our present and her abiding commitment to the Company is without question. Her long-term commitment through the founding of the Ingram Angels and the Ingram Room has created the opportunity and the environment for donor cultivation and allowed us to succeed in expanding the number and depth of major gifts to the Company. Her lead gift for the endowment helped to secure our artistic future. Beth believed in us then and believes in this Company now. Our newly-constructed administration building will be known as the Beth Ingram Administration Building.
Through Richard Stern’s support and foresight, we were able to purchase the Lyric Theatre in 1992, which allowed us to leverage that property to help us establish the Opera Center as our new home. Additionally, Richard Stern ensured his continued annual support of the Lyric when he established the Richard J. Stern Foundation for the Arts. To remember and honor his constant challenge for the company to strive for success, our new home will be known as The Lyric Opera of Kansas City Richard J. Stern Center. Representing the Richard J. Stern Foundation for the Arts was Michael Fields.
We honor and pay tribute to Michael and Ginger Frost, Beth Ingram and Richard J. Stern’s support, dedication and commitment with this naming.
After a formal ribbon cutting, General Director and CEO Deborah Sandler declared the building open, and the guests were invited for a tour.