The Dallas Opera Receives a $2.5 Million Lead Gift From Betty and Steve Suellentrop, and Hunt Consolidated, Inc.
The Dallas Opera is proud to announce the largest corporate gift in the opera's 57-year history; a landmark $2.5 million lead gift from Betty and Steve Suellentrop, and Hunt Consolidated, Inc., intended to inspire other major gifts in support of opera-based education, family performances and community outreach.
Steve Suellentrop is the incoming chairman of the board of directors of the Dallas Opera. He also is the president of Hunt Oil Company.
The historic gift creating the "Betty and Steve Suellentrop Educational Outreach Fund" is designed to provide support for TDO's multifaceted and nationally recognized education and community outreach programs, including effective new approaches to audience development and continuing patron engagement.
Steve Suellentrop said that, "in an era where fewer resources are available to schools to expose and educate our children about the arts, it's important for arts organizations to play a leading role in making access to all of the classical art forms a reality. Every child deserves the opportunity to experience the joys of music and the excitement of opera."
Programs include educational outreach to 19 North Texas school districts, homeschoolers and other providers serving more than 20,000 teachers and students each year by providing hundreds of on-site performances; Metropolitan Opera high-definition broadcasts, school visits and master classes with internationally renowned composers, singers and designers. In addition, the company provides teacher training sessions that equip educators with the tools to maximize the impact of these special experiences for their students, even as they enhance learning outcomes in core subjects.
The Dallas Opera also strives to provide budget-minded family programming in the form of abridged classics (The Elixir of Love), age-appropriate short operas (Doctor Miracle), and fresh contemporary takes on fun and familiar tales (Billy Goat's Gruff and Jack and the Beanstalk) in venues ranging from local after-school programs and summer camps to the elegant Margot and Bill Winspear Opera House at the AT&T Performing Arts Center.