Based in Los Angeles County's San Fernando Valley, Center Stage Opera brings only the highest quality operatic productions to diverse audiences in the Valley and beyond. CSO offers unique outreach, educational and senior programs throughout Southern California, as well as professional development programs that enable singing actors, instrumentalists and technicians working in the operatic genre to gain valuable experience.
CSO performs its mainstage productions at the beautiful Madrid Theatre, located in the heart of Antique Row in downtown Canoga Park, California. Our season is normally comprised of two fully staged operas and one orchestral concert each year.
All productions are led by CSO Music Director and Principal Conductor, Brian Onderdonk and feature the acclaimed Center Stage Opera Orchestra. Maestro Onderdonk has been with CSO since its founding in 2005, and has conducted internationally as well as locally.
CSO Artistic Director and Founder, Dylan F. Thomas, brings his unique vision to some of the most beloved stories in opera with captivating and intriguing stagings for the novice or seasoned audience member. His background includes directing and singing in opera, musical theater and jazz , as well as extensive training in acting. In addition to his work with CSO, he currently directs for the Pacific Symphony, and was the Outreach Stage Director for Opera Pacific until its recent closure.
Center Stage Opera operates under the umbrella of Will and Company, an official 501(c)3 organization, and is working to become a fully independent nonprofit organization. CSO programs reach the diverse populous throughout Southern California, connecting with children and adults from age 4 to 100 , with a goal to continually expand its programs to engage residents in cultivating a life-long interest in opera.
Our mission is to inspire and enrich the culture of Southern California and to showcase professional and emerging artists by bringing exhilarating operatic productions and passionate concert performances of high artistic standards, as well as creative educational and outreach programs to diverse audiences of all ages at affordable prices.
Our vision is to inspire and enrich the human spirit by engendering a life-long interest in exploring the multi-dimensionality and synergy of fully staged opera, orchestral music and the fusion of all performing arts disciplines to spawn creative thinking, increase community engagement and to stimulate young and seasoned minds, while continually achieving high quality productions, recitals and special events, and making opera accessible for all incomes and age groups.
We are dedicated to building meaningful connections with individuals, communities and businesses throughout Southern California through extensive outreach, professional education and versatile programs that bring in-depth exposure to all facets of opera (e.g., music, voice, staging, drama, dance, visual arts, foreign language), that provide a resource for knowledge and personal enrichment for our diverse populous, and that serve as a launching point for emerging young artists.