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Meet The New Faces Behind The Scenes At LA Opera

Posted on: July 23, 2019

Ah, summer internships – filing papers, sitting in on meetings, helping a 12 year old rehearse her aria before heading to Rehearsal Room 2 to stage a riot scene in the Japanese Internment Camp. Hang on, what? Every summer, LA Opera welcomes a new class of interns and they do more than just light filing. They help LA Opera Connects design curricula that will engage students in the arts. They dig into ad strategies to help us spread the word about opera. And they are Camp Counselors for our annual Opera Camp, helping kids find their voice and explore the history behind the opera the campers perform (after only 3 weeks of rehearsal!). Our interns come from all different schools and backgrounds. From a mezzo-soprano who explores issues of social justice on her podcast, to a business major who’s helping connect new audiences with the art form, these young people are inspiring us with their drive, creativity and passion for the arts. Keep reading and get to know these young rising stars of the behind-the-scenes opera world.

Xochitl S. Hernandez – LA Opera Connects Intern/Opera Camp Counselor

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Xochitl S. Hernandez - LA Opera's Connects Intern and Opera Camp Counselor 

Xochitl S. Hernandez is a senior at California State University, Northridge and is working toward obtaining her Bachelors of Music in vocal performance and a minor in Spanish-language journalism. As a mezzo-soprano, she has performed in her school’s operas and in performances both solo and choral.  Xochitl also writes articles and stories for CSUN’s El Nuevo Sol and its correlating podcast series Radio Nepantla. Xochitl will soon be producing her own podcast series and correlating blog interviewing women of color singers and musicians which will provide advice and tips to musicians, address social issues like gender and ethnic disparity in the industry, and provide a platform for representation of multicultural storytelling. This summer she is learning about the planning of events such as Opera Camp and is very excited to also be a camp counselor!

Joseph Lim – Marketing Intern

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Joseph Lim - LA Opera's Marketing Intern

Joseph Lim is currently working with the marketing department at LA Opera. He’s originally from Los Angeles but grew up in Valencia (by Six Flags - his childhood hangout spot). Joseph is currently going into his final year at USC, as a business administration major with a focus and minor in consumer behavior. He loves music, primarily EDM and rap music, and hopes to have a DJ set at a show soon. Joseph has always felt that music is one of the few mediums that can connect drastically different people; so when he DJ's he tries to mix-in music to meet all the music tastes. This position really highlighted the impacts arts has on our society today, and he is really excited to help LA Opera prepare for our next season to keep the magic going. 

Jennifer Santiago – LA Opera Development Intern

IMG 3558Jennifer Santiago - LA Opera's Development Intern

Jennifer Santiago is a rising senior at Yale University, majoring in Political Science. As a Los Angeles native, she is proud to be a member of a culturally vibrant and diverse community. This summer, Jennifer is LA Opera’s Development intern and she is working with the company’s Institutional Giving, Research, Individual Giving, and Special Events teams. Her rotations allow her to learn how each team contributes to the success of a nonprofit organization’s fundraising efforts. Throughout her internship, Jennifer has developed a greater appreciation for opera and nonprofit arts organizations.

Nancy Walecki – LA Opera Connects Intern

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Nancy Walecki - LA Opera's Connects Intern

Nancy Walecki is a junior at Yale University, working as LA Opera Connects’ Intern. Although she’s studying History and French, her favorite thing to do is sing. In fact, she’s an alumna of the Music Center’s very own Spotlight Program, as well as the National YoungArts Foundation. This summer she’s designing curricula that educators can use to teach their students about opera, and conducting outreach efforts to get the word out about LA Opera in new communities. When she’s not at work, you can find her roller-skating, learning guitar, or exploring her favorite city in the world (LA, of course).

These internships are sponsored by the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors through the Los Angeles County Department of Arts and Culture.