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Opera Kelowna to celebrate Valentine's Day

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Eeva-Maria Kopp, a recent arrival from Finland, has joined Opera Kelowna.
Borrowing a page from the fanfare of Oscar night, Opera Kelowna is poised to give a star-studded performance evening with razzmatazz and glitz.
In partnership with Karis Support Society, the upcoming Valentine's Day fundraiser will be a staged event, complete with red-carpet treatment, paparazzi photo ops, swag room goodies and a lot a of fun.
Under the direction of Alexandra Babbel, the accomplished singers of Candesca, a collection of top-notch young women, will perform Belle Nuit d'Amour (Beautiful Night of Love).
"It really will be a beautiful evening of music, the singing will be moving, the setting will be extravagant, and there will be a huge after-party too, just like the Oscars," Babbel said.
Set in an era of neo-Mozartian designs, the event takes place at the Bo.ttega Farm and Inn in the upper Mission, surrounded by trees and nature, away from the bustle of downtown.
"It's all about having a terrific evening of fun, and all for a very worthy cause," Babbel added.
Guests will be treated to world-class opera, showcasing Opera Kelowna Young Artists program, Candesca, a contingent from the Cirque Theatre Company and the Okanagan Rhythmic Gymnastics Club, which was founded by Canadian Olympian Camille Martens who teaches the performers in Vernon.
"Along with music and entertainment, we also have a featured black and white wall of love scenes, a fire-thrower, and of course delicious hors d'oeuvres, designer sweets and custom cocktails," Babbel explained.
The semi-formal affair encourages guests to "sparkle-up" or truly get into the swing of things with their "favourite Mozartian outfit."
As part of the fundraising celebrations, there will be a "VIP gift suite and beauty lounge" a silent auction and gift bags.
"This is for a very, very worthy cause," Babbel added.
"We, of course, want to the have a lot of fun, but the cause is at the core of the evening."
Among the Candesca singers will be eight young women and eight young men; while Opera Kelowna will feature 20 voices.
One of those voices is newcomer Eeva-Maria Kopp, a recent arrival from Finland, whose first task was to locate a "professional opera group" where she could continue to sing at the level that she was accustomed to in Europe.
"Opera Kelowna and Alexandra were a perfect match," Kopp explained. "Opera is a multi-disciplinary art that includes not only the vocal arts, but also visual art, theatre arts and poetry. All of these will be part of the evening."
Karis Supportive Housing is a non-profit organization that works in the community by providing much-needed safe housing, support, life skills and training for women who are caught in life-altering addiction and mental health issues.
There are 16 homes throughout Kelowna, offering mostly women and some men help through live-in residency programs that help them leave old lives and re-build new, healthy life skills and plans.
The newest project of Karis is building a 30-unit multipurpose care facility for women as part of the proposed construction on the old Kelowna Secondary School site centrally located in downtown Kelowna.

QUICKFACTS
What: Belle Nuit d'Amour, beautiful night of love, fundraiser for Karis supportive housing, featuring Opera Kelowna and Candesca singers.
When: Feb. 14 at 6:30 p.m. for VIP reception; general admission 7:30 p.m.
Where: Bo.ttega Farm Inn and Studio, 4485 Sallows Rd. S.E. Kelowna
Tickets: Available at Opera Kelowna 250-575-1434; Bo.ttega 778-477-5771; Streaming Cafe, 596 Leon Ave.; operakelowna.com and bo.ttega.com .

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