The Highlands Opera Studio (HOS) acknowledged its Ontario Trillium Foundation (OTF) resilient communities grant during an event at the Haliburton Highlands Museum Jan. 5.

HOS received a two-year, $92,100 grant this past summer.

The money will support the purchase of digital equipment for use inside and outside the theatre, along with the hiring of personnel to operate the equipment and train HOS staff in its use.

HOS general and co-artistic director, Valerie Kuinka, said the impact of the grant cannot be overstated.

“For some people, the pandemic has created a lasting apprehension to return to live events in confined spaces, and has also resulted in a serious lack of qualified professional theatre technical personnel, impacting the ability to prepare and present live staged events,” she said.

“Through the purchase of strategic digital equipment, this grant will enable HOS to streamline and upgrade all our activities and re-connect to our community, not only through the unequalled experience of live performance in indoor venues, but also online, or even outside, therefore serving our community better.”

MPP Laurie Scott attended the event.

She said the grant is creating more opportunities for the community to get involved with the arts.

“These funds will ensure that the Highlands Opera Studio is able to share the gift of experience and creativity, in-person and virtually,” Scott said. OTF volunteer Klara Oyler also spoke.

There was a screening of a short video featuring Cree First Nation’s Andrew Balfour who composed and created Mishabooz’s Realm. It was commissioned by the HOS and written in the County. The HOS used its new projector to show the 15-minute video. They will next purchase a sound system.

The night was also an opportunity to show appreciation for HOS volunteers from the 2022 season. Soprano Lauren Margison performed three songs, accompanied by pianist Melissa Stephens.

See for more information. Holiday promo reduced tickets for the 2023 HOS season are still available until Jan. 20. They can be purchased through the website or by calling toll-free: 1-855-455- 5533.