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For Immediate Release
Media Contacts: Sherry Meadows Lewis / (407) 836-8595 / sherry.lewis@ocfl.net
Jen Cipolla / (407) 836-8596 / jennifer.cipolla@ocfl.net

Orlando Opera Company Collection Latest Addition to Orange County Regional History Center Archives

ORLANDO, Fla. (May 29, 2009) - The Orange County Regional History Center announces the addition of the Orlando Opera Company Collection to its archives. The donation by the Orlando Opera Company documents 51 years of opera in Central Florida and contains photographs, scrapbooks, programs, newsletters, posters, advertisements, and information on the Orlando Opera Company's fundraising events. Also included are materials documenting local performances of internationally renowned singers, including Plácido Domingo, Luciano Pavarotti, Jessye Norman, and Denyce Graves.

The Junior League of Orlando started the Orlando Opera Company in 1958 to benefit the Florida Symphony Orchestra. Originally named the Opera Gala Guild, the Orlando Opera remained under the Florida Symphony Orchestra until 1979 when it became the Orlando Opera Company, Inc. During its operation, the company grew into a nationally recognized opera company. The Orlando Opera Company suspended operations on April 30, 2009.

The collection of these materials at the History Center's Joseph L. Brechner Research Center maintains a historical record of the opera in Central Florida, makes them available to the public, and ensures their accessibility to future generations.

The Joseph L. Brechner Research Center and Library at the Orange County Regional History Center contains more than 10,000 three-dimensional artifacts, 16,000 photographs and postcards, nearly 6,000 books, and a vast collection of archival material including personal papers, records, press clips, maps, and other sources of information on the community. The Joseph L. Brechner Research Center and Library is open Monday-Saturday 10 a.m.-5 pm. Call (407) 836-8599 or e-mail library@ocfl.net for an appointment.

The Orange County Regional History Center, housed in a restored historic five-story 1927 county courthouse in downtown Orlando, showcases the vast collections of the Historical Society of Central Florida, Inc. The History Center features three floors of permanent exhibitions that take visitors on a journey through the region's fascinating transition from Indian settlement to small town surrounded by citrus groves and cattle ranches to today's tourist-centric community. The museum also presents nationally important, limited-run exhibitions, bringing unique aspects of our nation's history to life in the heart of Central Florida.

The History Center is located in the heart of downtown Orlando at 65 E. Central Blvd. For general information, call (407) 836-8500 or visit www.thehistorycenter.org.


The Orange County Regional History Center is financed in part by Orange County Government through the Department of Health & Family Services under Orange County Mayor Richard T. Crotty and the Board of County Commissioners, The Historical Society of Central Florida, Inc., United Arts of Central Florida with funds from the United Arts Campaign and by the State of Florida, Department of State, Division of Cultural Affairs and the Florida Arts Council, as well as the National Endowment for the Arts: Division of Historic Resources and Bureau of Historical Museums.