A trip back in time… to the living room of a grandparent or great grandparent, might have found them gathered around the radio or television, anxiously awaiting the latest PBS broadcast of Great Performances from the Metropolitan Opera…or Maria Callas’s final performance of Tosca… and most of us can remember the first time we heard The Three Tenors and the thrill of that robust sound.

Opera is in fact, a musical piece of the very fabric of our lives. It first comes to us in childhood, through beloved Bugs Bunny and Tom and Jerry cartoons, and it stays with us into adulthood, found in scenes from iconic films and even television commercials- who can forget hearing the Lakme Duet in that British Airways commercial?

One may ask, if it is so much a part of our lives already, why then does opera continue to be a mystery to some? We here at the Pasadena Vocal Competition look to solve that mystery.

Through our support of rising opera singers and the offering of a free opportunity to hear them, PVC has made it our mission to promote lifelong interest and education in opera for generations to come.

Music is one of the few things in life that can move us by instinct alone. For music can truly and unapologetically bring us to tears without reason. Few things can stir human feelings and emotions as deeply and, sometimes, inexplicably as music does, regardless of one’s deeper musical knowledge.

Music is at once the ultimate prayer and the rowdiest of companions.

Opera is a mirror to the deepest of human feelings and to the most heroic of characters. It is home to betrayals and senseless love, to injustices, and happily ever afters. A place where the human canon of stories and characters, coupled with the glorious beauty of music reigns as both the most divine, and earthly of all arts.

Opera is, perhaps, the only thing on earth able to hold hands with the human soul.