Opera Europa is the leading service organisation for professional opera companies and opera festivals throughout Europe. It currently serves over 200 member companies from 43 different countries. Its main office is in Brussels, where it is registered as a non-profit cultural organisation in compliance with Belgian law. Its governing Board is made up of 18 members chosen from the general membership and elected for 3 year terms. An executive Director, a General Manager and a team of 7 are responsible for managing the organisation and responding to members’ needs.


Membership subscriptions are set by the full membership assembly and are presently €2,700 per calendar year, a rate that has been stable for ten years. This amount includes a varied set of online and live services. For companies without a theatre base, independent producers and ensembles, Opera Europa offers three additional membership schemes at different rates and services.

Opera Europa’s GDPR compliant information systems offer:

  • Up-to-date directory of key staff in member companies to facilitate communication and participation
  • Listservs for specialist networking opportunities and broader sharing of collegial advice
  • A comprehensive and updated database of members’ future production plans, allowing a collaborative marketplace for co-productions, rentals and exchanges for those who contribute
  • Access to casting and production database tools
  • Access to a benchmarking tool with confidential financial profiles of many member companies for those who contribute
  • Free placement of job offers on the Opera Europa website
  • Reduced advertising rates in our newsletter and on our website

Beyond the online services, members benefit from live networking and participation opportunities via

  • Discounted conference and forum participation fees
  • Consultation on management issues from the Opera Europa executive team
  • Involvement in professional advocacy and lobbying through association membership of Pearle* and Culture Action Europe as well as reciprocal membership benefits with Opera America
  • Voting and eligibility rights at Opera Europa’s General Assembly of Members

A quarterly printed newsletter keeps members informed of activities, conference programmes and professional issues affecting member companies.


How to meet with other members: Networking events

Conferences open to the general membership take place twice a year in alternating member cities. Conference programmes focus on topics and developments of current practical interest, such as artistic issues, maximizing income, audience development, new technologies and new media, human resources, fundraising and PR/Marketing. Conferences are further especially useful for developing contacts for Europe-wide co-productions.

The specialist forums accommodate the needs of the specialist groups for confidential peer-to-peer discussions and sharing or even developing best practises in their respective fields. The active forums include groups in Artistic Administration, Audio-visual & Digital media, Costume, Make-up & Wig, Education, Fundraising & Friends, Sustainability, Human Resources, Marketing & Communication, Independent Producers, Technical & Production as well as Technical Managers and Set Workshops.


Opera Europa Initiatives

The Board of Opera Europa has determined to prioritise several initiatives for the association's work over the next few years.


OperaVision is a free streaming platform offers currently up to 4 full length opera performances and up to 20 bonus videos per month, each with digital programme notes and subtitles in English, French and German. The content is curated by a project manager and three coordinators.

29 partners and from 18 European countries make an annual contribution towards the maintenance of the platform in a move towards matching European Union’s Creative Europe programme. The rest of the content is provided by other member companies who have cleared rights for streaming.

The free, content-rich, digital platform is the central element of Opera Europa’s advocacy of the art of opera. To that end, we are nurturing partnerships with other players in the cultural field, including broadcasters and educationalists.

World Opera Day

A linked initiative for live advocacy for opera was the World Opera Forum in Madrid in April 2018, which involved our partners at Opera America and Opera Latinoamérica. In times of decreasing public subsidy and increasing populism, Opera as an art form needs to explore new paths in order to ensure its place in society. After 11 successful years of European Opera Days, Opera Europa launches the brand new World Opera Day on 25th October 2019 during its autumn conference. The objective of the initiative is to show that opera gives back to society and to raise awareness for the value of the art form. Member companies, together with Opera America, Opera Latinoamérica, PERALE* and Culture Action Europe have the possibility to promote positive action via a channelled social media campaign over the last days of October, highlight their community involvement and educational projects or raise money for local charities, e.g. with pro bono performances.


Alongside these advocacy initiatives, Opera Europa is determined to invest in professional tools which are designed to strengthen its members’ professional capabilities.

One is a comprehensive Benchmarking exercise designed to gather objective and authoritative data which can be genuinely useful to member companies in assessing their performance in relation to their peers and in supporting their case with public and private stakeholders. Our database includes input from 68 member companies and is accessible via an intuitive online tool to those who contributed to the exercise. The aim for 2019 is to reach 100 participants in order to be able to publish a relevant field report on the diverse European opera landscape.

Opera Management Course

Professional training is a preoccupation of many members. Our Opera Management Course will be in its seventh year this August in Pesaro, and has already yielded capable individuals for the sector.