Ravenstahl: Pittsburgh Opera awarded $350,000 state grant

HARRISBURG, July 1 – State Rep. Adam Ravenstahl, D-Allegheny, said a $350,000 state grant today was awarded to support the Pittsburgh Opera’s 2016-17 season.

“The grant provides vital funding for the opera company’s four mainstage productions on tap this fall and next spring,” Ravenstahl said. “It helps pay for everything from center rentals and wardrobe to paying the highly skilled professionals – conductors, orchestra, stage crews – who make the season so highly anticipated.”

The grant was approved by the Commonwealth Financing Authority, an independent state agency that evaluates and administers funding for projects that create jobs and improve cultural and recreational assets.

Ravenstahl said the opera contributes nearly $7.4 million in economic impact to the Pittsburgh region annually and engages almost 45,000 people through its productions at the Benedum Center and other fares.

“The opera is a jewel that contributes greatly to the quality of life in the region,” Ravenstahl said.

Funding for the grants stems from the Pennsylvania Gaming Economic Development and Tourism Fund Program, which was established to fund community and economic development projects in Allegheny County through revenue generated from all casinos.

The Pittsburgh Opera’s 78th season begins Oct. 8 with a production of Verdi’s La Traviata. The world premiere of The Summer King, based on the life of baseball hall of famer Josh Gibson, is scheduled for April 29, 2017.