Click Here

Join the Opera Guild of Dayton Today! Your membership is very important to us.

Click the button on the right to fill out our online membership application and join the Guild today.
Click Here
NOTE: Paypal is the processing tool that the Guild uses for handling money. However, you may join using your Paypal account OR your personal credit card.

Membership Is Our Lifeblood   

Opera Guild of Dayton welcomes new members to join us for fun and meaningful service as we support Dayton Opera. Assistance is needed in many diverse areas that let you use your talents to keep the cultural scene strong in the Dayton area. You can take part in one of our many award-winning educational programs for school children or adults throughout the area. Many exciting fund and friend raising events are scheduled throughout the year. Marketing and communications are critical areas for success in the Guild. Special skills such as graphic design, writing, ushering, hosting and more are always needed.
To join:
  • Contact Managing Vice President of Membership, Margarete Jennings, 937/469-3633 or at
  • Or contact the Guild at 937/224-3521 ext. 1099.
  • Click here to print a copy of our Membership Application. Please mail the completed form to: Margarete Jennings, 745 Woodbourne Trail, Dayton, Ohio 45459.


The summary below is a general review of how the Opera Guild of Dayton membership fulfilled the Guild’s mission of encouraging and promoting opera in the Greater Dayton area and supported Dayton Opera through fundraising, marketing and education activities in 2016-2017.

Financial contributions of $71,065 to Dayton Opera:

  • Series sponsorship of $30,000 for the production of I Pagliacci
  • Annual operating support of $35,000
  • Artists-In-Residence support of $5,000
  • Mead Theatre for the Student Dress Rehearsal of $1,065

In-kind donations to Dayton Opera:

  • 264 nights of home hospitality valued at $66/night to cast members for a savings of $17,424
  • Volunteer ushers for two dress rehearsals and airport transportation for visiting artists
  • Volunteers prepared and served hearty snack food and beverages to cast members for the first “onstage” rehearsal for each production.
  • The value of these transportation, volunteer and prepared food hours – priceless!

Education Programs:

  • Students’ Night @ Dress Rehearsal: 351 students, junior high through college, were hosted by the Opera Guild for the dress rehearsal of Dayton Opera’s production of I Pagliacci at the Schuster Center on November 9.
  • Children’s Traveling Opera (CTO): 27 programs of The Pirates of Penzance were presented to over 2,500 students in grades three through six at schools throughout the Miami Valley by this national award-winning program made up of 21 volunteers, three rotating soloists and three accompanists.
  • Volunteers: Jane Reynolds, Cindy Hoffsis, Effie Sue Kemerley, Pat Ferguson, Mary& Wayne Mathieu and Linda Rountree contributed 140+ hours to design and create costumes for the newest CTO production The Pirates of Penzance. For their hard work and dedication, Opera Volunteers International (OVI) awarded them its prestigious Partners in Excellence Award in February 2017.
  • Opera Marionettes: 1,400 students, preschool through second grade, experienced their first exposure to opera with an introduction to opera by this national award-winning program. The 28 programs were performed by a dedicated troupe of 15 volunteers.
  • High School Vocal Competition: Through an endowment from the Norma J. Ross Youth Foundation, the Guild awarded $1,350 in prize money to three finalists.  Judges were Minnita Daniel-Cox, Assistant Professor of Voice and Coordinator of Voice Studies at the University of Dayton; Alicia Hotopp, local professional vocal teacher; and Brian Skoog, 2017 Artist-in-Residence, Dayton Opera.
  • Tri-State College Vocal Competition (TSCVC): The Guild awarded $5,000 to five finalists pared by preliminary judges from an initial 31 applicants from Ohio, Indiana and Kentucky. This event is supported in part by the Guild’s Remembrance Fund.  Final judges were Tom Bankston, Artistic Director of Dayton Opera; Kara Shay Thompson, dramatic soprano; and Jeffrey Powell, Dayton Opera Chorus Master.     

Fund Raising and Special Events:

  • BRAVO! 2016: This classic Champagne Brunch and Fashion Show was chaired by Barbara Stewart Bostick. Guests were entertained at Sinclair’s Ponitz Center. The fashions were provided by So Crystal Designs and Bea Foster. Chico’s of Oakwood dressed the Community Models who competed for the title of “BRAVO! Model of the Year.”  Proceeds exceeded $17,000.
  • “Night of a Hundred Stars: Opera Ball 2017 orchestrated by this year’s chair, Penny Wolff, was a star-studded, twinkling evening of understated elegance held at the University of Dayton River Campus Cafe (co-sponsor).   It was a glittering evening replete with silent and live auctions and dancing to the big band sound of the Bob Gray orchestra.  Of special note were the dance segments orchestrated by Barbara Haller, Arthur Murray Dance Center (AMDC). Presenting Sponsor GE Aviation President Vic Bonneau and his wife Karen performed a rhythmic Bolero to the tune of Vincent (Starry, Starry Night) sung romantically by Artist-in-Residence Brian Skoog. Then, six AMDC faculty showcased a spirited combination of Lindy Hop, Jitterbug and Swing. Net proceeds of $45,000 were realized.
  • Boutique: Chair Nancy Farkas was supported by a dedicated sales staff of Guild members that included: Rosalie Jennings, Dana Kane and Amy Lombardo. The Boutique sold a wide variety of “must have items” in the lobby of the Schuster Center before and during intermission of every opera performance.  Items were also available to purchase at our Annual Membership Luncheon and BRAVO! Fashion Show.  Boutique netted $1,597.
  • Membership Luncheon: Our 54th annual Membership Luncheon chaired by Toni Winger was held at Dayton Country Club on March 16. The luncheon was a harbinger of spring and created an atmosphere of lighthearted fun. Guests shared their common interest in  operatic music.  The food was delicious and lovely prizes were awarded.  The Dayton Opera’s Artists-In-Residence performed beautifully.
  • Stars of Tomorrow Luncheon: This annual luncheon preceded the Tri-State College Vocal Competition and was held at Moraine Country Club with Helen Miller as chair.  Following the luncheon the Competition was held at the Kettering Seventh Day Adventist Church.  A reception followed the Competition where refreshments were provided by Susan Herman and her daughter.
  • Garden Party 2017: Drs. Hyacinth Paul and Malay Dey hosted the Guild’s 25th annual Garden Party at their home on Sunday,  June 25. The weather could not have been more perfect–sunny skies and comfortable temperatures. Everyone gathered around the azure pool to mix and mingle. Many wandered the extensive gardens filled with colorful blossoms, shady trees, water features, arched gateways and massive stone outcroppings. It was a relaxed and beautiful setting for a light dinner buffet followed by a sweets extravaganza.
  • Annual Meeting: An elegant brunch was served at Dayton Country Club on June 14 preceding the 53nd Annual Meeting. Barbara Stewart Bostick presented the Friend of the Year Award to Jeanna Furst and daughter, Kylie Furst Johnson, for Furst Florist having done so much for the Guild over the years.  Penny Wolff and Judy Hudson presented the BRAVO! Award to a surprised Linda Rountree for having initiated and led the effort to write, produce and direct CTO’s The Pirates of Penzance and for having submitted the Partners in Excellence Award nomination to OVI. Dolores Anderson and Penny Wolff presented a PowerPoint program showing highlights of the many Guild events and accomplishments throughout the year. The Guild surpassed the $2 million mark in contributions to Dayton Opera since the year 2000–a monumental feat! The members present adopted the 2017-2018 budget and voted for six new board members.
  • Party With A Purpose: Party With A Purpose Dayton, a non-profit organization was originally created under the Rotary International Organization. Now it is an independent organization whose goal is to bring younger, as well as more experienced, professionals together to socialize, network and provide mentorship opportunities while raising funds for a good cause.They hosted the Opera Guild at Coco’s on June 27. Penny Wolff showcased the Guild’s many programs and made new friends for Opera. The proceeds of $282 for the evening have been designated for the TSCVC.

Marketing and Communications:

  • Opera Notes: This past year the Guild published fewer full-color issues of its newsletter which is distributed to Guild members, Dayton Opera Season subscribers, schools and libraries. However starting with the Spring 2017 issue, Opera Notes has a new editor, Heather Martin of MartinInk, and a new look . The Guild expects to publish four issues per year again.
  • The Guild’s web page features information about who we are, our events, educational programs, vocal competitions and more. The site averages 1,200+ views per month. Access to our Membership Application, event reservations and general donations or the Remembrance Fund gifts can be made at the site. OVI awarded a $1,500 matching technical grant to be used for the Guild’s website and social media enhancement.
  • e-Notes: Guild members were kept informed on up to the minute advisories or events through this blast news bulletin.
  • Promotional Events: A marketing table was set up next to our Boutique at each Dayton Opera performance, at BRAVO! and at the Membership Luncheon to focus on upcoming Guild events and to provide information about membership.

Stay in touch with the Guild

Guild members with e-mail receive e-Notes, our electronic newsletter with current information and updates. If you are not receiving it, please contact Suzanne Crippen at 937/885-6204. In addition, Guild members receive an award winning quarterly newsletter, Opera Notes.

Volunteers Needed

Volunteers are currently needed to assist in making sandwiches and cookies for the cast and crew on the Monday prior to opening night of an opera. This is a very long rehearsal day for everyone and the refreshments are sincerely appreciated. If you can help, please e-mail Helen Miller, managing vice president of special events/hospitality, at or call 937/885-4925.

The Guild has a robust schedule for our educational programs and is looking for new volunteers to assist. Contact Nora Stang at 937/832-3713 or for Opera Marionettes or Linda Rountree at 937/429-1503 or for Children’s Traveling Opera.

Ushers are needed for dress rehearsals on the Wednesday prior to opening night of an opera. Contact Helen Miller at 937/885-4925 or

Volunteers can assist Dr. David Sievers at the High School Vocal Competition scheduled for March 24, 2018. Duties include the reception desk, escorting students to rehearsal areas, feeding the judges and volunteers and more. Contact Dr. Sievers at 937/542-9460 or

The DPAA Family Concert World of Wonder scheduled at 3:00 p.m. on January 20, 2018, needs over 100 volunteers to direct attendees and to conduct activities throughout Schuster Theater prior to the performance. No experience is required for these tasks. Contact Kathy Thornburg at 937/477-6281 or