Houston Grand Opera Gets Hearst Grant

People in charge at Houston Grand Opera say a $250 thousand dollar grant from the William Randolph Hearst Foundation will be put to good uses, in HGO's public outreach programs for students and teachers. Jim Bell reports.

The quarter million dollar grant from the Hearst Foundation will support HGO's Student Performance Series and Teacher Workshops for three years. Community Affairs Director Sandra Bernhard says HGO's reduced price operas for students are hugely popular, because their teachers were graduates of the HGO teacher workshops.  

"By affecting a teacher and assisting a teacher who's interested in this art form, what we have done is create a link between the classroom, the teacher, the curriculum and the art.  And that can live in a lot of different ways and can be very informative for a lot of students."

Bernhard says programs like these are helping to groom the next generation of opera lovers and public citizens.

"We're grooming those people who we want to have imagination, who we want to have spontaneity and who problem-solve in very unique ways, and all of that can be taught basically through art."

Bernhard says countless people got their first exposure to opera and great music from teachers who knew how to share their own love for the music with their students. 

Jim Bell, KUHF, Houston Public Radio News.