Une Fête de la Belle Époque:  An exquisite gala evening serves as a special fundraiser for one of the nation’s premiere boutique opera companies, specializing in French Baroque Opera.

by Patrick D. McCoy

When you think of French Baroque Composers, often the names such as Lully and Rameau swirl around like a fine cabernet.  Since 1995, Maestro Ryan Brown and the company have been presenting world class performances of these sometimes neglected treasures of the early music canon.   Tonight, the company will celebrate with an elegant gala at the Perry Belmont Mansion in Washington’s Dupont Circle.

Opera Lafayette enjoys full seasons in both Washington, DC and in New York.  The gala event will feature a cocktail reception, seated dinner, an auction and performances featuring soprano Jaely Chamberlain Turner, tenor Patrick Kilbride, pianist Kathy Detweiler and violinist Ryan Brown.

David C. Frederick and Sophia Lynn, two of Opera Lafayette’s most loyal benefactors and the benefit’s honored and distinguished patrons will match every dollar raised from the event.

Entrance to the event is now closed, but donations can still be made by CLICKING HERE.


Opera Lafayette has earned critical acclaim and a loyal following for its performances and recordings with international singers renowned for their interpretations of baroque and classical operas. The New York Times has said, “Opera Lafayette has built a sterling reputation through specializing in rarities by Gluck, Grétry and the like.” Opera Lafayette’s season includes performances at major venues in Washington, DC, and New York City. At the invitation of Château de Versailles Spectacles, Opera Lafayette made its international debut at the Opéra Royal in February 2012 with the modern world premiere of Monsigny’s Le Roi et le fermier. France’s Opéra Magazine said, “This production should be noted and remembered in the annals of Versailles, for the intelligence of its staging, the beauty of its sets, and its high musical quality.” Opera Lafayette returned to Versailles for five sold-out performances of its French Così project in January and February of 2014.


–A native of Petersburg, Virginia, Patrick D. McCoy is a graduate of Virginia State University and Shenandoah Conservatory in Winchester, Virginia.  He has been an arts contributor for Examiner.com, CBS Washington, The Afro American Newspaper and most recently was the Performing Arts Columnist at Washington Life Magazine for four years. As a church musician, he currently serves as Organist/Choirmaster at Saint John’s Episcopal Church (Zion Parish) in Beltsville, Maryland.   Visit www.patrickdmccoy.com for all of your arts news and send press releases and ideas to patrickdmccoy@patrickdmccoy.com.