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Memories of Opening Night: Carol F. Henry

We asked Carol F. Henry, one of the founders of LA Opera and the current President of the Board, for her memories of LA Opera’s inaugural performance of Otello on October 7, 1986.

Warner and I were so thrilled to be there on October 7, 1986, and to be a part of what even then I knew would be the beginning of a major international opera company. We had Placido with us from the beginning, coupled with the experience and wisdom of Peter Hemmings, so we knew we were going to be among the winners on the world stage. I never doubted it.  We were seated in the Founders Circle and I was somewhat horrified when the curtain stuck, probably more horrified then than I would be now. Today it’s just a glitch; but then I most likely feared it was an omen.

But what did I wear? Probably the same long white dress I wore to the opening of the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion in 1964. It still fit, it was the only long dress I still had after three pregnancies, and times were tight enough then that a new gown would have been out of the question. And I loved it!


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