Order Of Canada Awarded To Opera Atelier Co-Artistic Directors

Her Excellency the Right Honourable Julie Payette, Governor General of Canada, today announced the appointment of Opera Atelier founding Co-Artistic Directors Marshall Pynkoski and Jeannette Lajeunesse Zingg to the Order of Canada. This announcement comes on the heels of Opera Atelier's most extensive international touring in the company's 33-year history. This honour recognizes Pynkoski and Zingg's outstanding impact on the performing arts in Canada and their longtime commitment to the mentorship of young artists through The School of Atelier Ballet.

Pynkoski and Zingg founded Opera Atelier in 1985. The company - dedicated to historically informed productions of baroque and classical opera and ballet is an acknowledged Canadian jewel with an unrivaled international touring schedule. Most recently, Opera Atelier's production of Charpentier's Medée was chosen to a part of the official Canada 150 celebrations in France.

"It seems fitting," says Pynkoski, "that Jeannette and I received a phone call from the Governor General's office while we were in the Louvre researching for an upcoming Opera Atelier production."

"We feel that we share this honour with Opera Atelier's entire creative team and The Committed Artists who have provided us with such inspiration over the years," adds Lajeunesse Zingg.

Pynkoski and Zingg have directed and choreographed for leading opera houses and festivals worldwide including the famed La Scala, the Salzburg Festival, the Pesaro Rossini Festival and Opera Atelier tours regularly to the Royal Opera House at Versailles.

The Co-Artistic Directors are particularly happy to receive this award concurrently. "Our work is inseparable," says Pynkoski, "and it is our hope that this award will heighten the public's interest in the repertoire we most love."

Pynkoski and Zingg are the recipients of numerous awards including the Toronto Arts Award, the Ruby Award for Outstanding Contribution to Opera in Canada, the Chevalier dans L'Ordre des Arts et des Lettres by the Government of France, and were named by TIME Magazine as one of Canada's Best in Music.

Created in 1967, the Order of Canada, one of our country's highest civilian honours, recognizes outstanding achievement, dedication to the community and service to the nation. Close to 7 000 people from all sectors of society have been invested into the Order. Their contributions are varied, yet they have all enriched the lives of others and have taken to heart the motto of the Order: DESIDERANTES MELIOREM PATRIAM ("They desire a better country"). Appointments are made by the governor general on the recommendation of the Advisory Council for the Order of Canada.

Opera Atelier's current season continues in spring 2019 with Mozart's Idomeneo (Apr. 4 - 13, 2019 at the Ed Mirvish Theatre), starring Canadian soprano Measha Brueggergosman. For more information visit Opera Atelier's website: www.operaatelier.com.

Opera Atelier is North America's premier period opera/ballet company, producing the opera, ballet and drama of the 17th, 18th, and 19th centuries. While drawing upon the aesthetics and ideals of the period, Opera Atelier goes beyond "reconstruction" and infuses each production with an inventive theatricality that resonates with modern audiences. Led by founding artistic directors Marshall Pynkoski and Jeannette Lajeunesse Zingg since 1985, Opera Atelier has garnered acclaim for its performances at home as well as in the United States, Europe and Asia. Opera Atelier is committed to the development of young Canadian artists and offers innovative education programs for youth, as well as $15 tickets for ages 15 to 30.

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