Opera roadshow comes to town Saturday

Pacific Opera Victoria volunteer Gary Karr clowns around with POV staffer Carla Funk to help promote the company’s Give it Up for Opera fundraiser

Pacific Opera Victoria volunteer Gary Karr clowns around with POV staffer Carla Funk to help promote the company’s Give it Up for Opera fundraiser

POV supporters encouraged to bring items for appraisal, possible donation

Having lived in Japan for some time in past years, Gary Karr is game to try on the donated royal blue kimono stored for now in Carla Funk’s office.

Karr, the internationally known classical bassist, is wearing his hat – or in this case, dressing gown – as chair of Pacific Opera Victoria’s Give it Up for Opera fundraiser committee.

The idea behind tomorrow’s event (Feb. 5) – a kind of Antiques Roadshow-meets-high tea at the opera event – was to create another opportunity for people to give to the opera.

“We’re in difficult economic times and people don’t have a lot of cash,” he says. “But they have things, things they don’t want or that the kids don’t need. I thought that would be a nice incentive for people who really love the opera and want to support it.”

Karr, who retired from touring in 2001 but still does recording, isn’t among the performers scheduled to entertain the crowd Saturday at the Da Vinci Centre. But he’s excited about giving opera fans a fun way to show their support. “It’ll be like a carnival. It’ll be a whole lot of fun with music and food.”

And, of course, there’s the appraisals.

POV staffer Funk says people may bring in up to three items each for valuation by one of 15 appraisers donating their time for the day. The hope is the items will, in turn, be donated to the cause.

“This really is Gary’s brainchild,” Funk says of the unique fundraiser, which will see donated items sold by Kilshaw’s Auctions and the money given back to POV.

“We were looking for a creative way for people to make contributions that wouldn’t hurt them too much in the pocketbook.”

On her desk lay items ranging from a multi-tiered silver candelabra to a fine china tea set to a Beatrix Potter Peter Rabbit ceramic cookie jar, all antiques.

Besides musical entertainment and afternoon tea and snacks, the afternoon will include a “sharing of fun stories of where these items come from,” Funk says.

The event, on from noon till 4 p.m., “will have that delightful Pacific Opera feel to it,” she says, with elegant music and “elegant items from another era that would look good on anyone’s sideboard.”

Tickets for Give it Up for Opera are $20 each or two for $35. Call 250-382-1641 to book, or purchase them at the door, 195 Bay St. For more information, visit www.pov.bc.ca.

editor@oakbaynews.com