The Baumann Centre is a home for our art-making and a centre for artist training and youth education in the community. Housing POV's box office and administration, opera rehearsals, and artist training programs, the Centre is also a welcoming home for an array of initiatives to nurture artists, engage the community, and educate and delight families and youth.
The Baumann Centre is the culmination of a years-long search by Pacific Opera Victoria to find a long-term home and to develop an integrated artistic facility that would amalgamate our administration, training, and rehearsal spaces.
In 2013, Pacific Opera Victoria secured a 10-year lease on the two-storey Hall of the Church of St. John the Divine. During 2014, Architect Franc D'Ambrosio oversaw acoustic engineering for the 2,500 sq. ft. Wingate Studio, as well as construction of an office suite, music room, and public entrance. In January of 2015, Pacific Opera Victoria moved into the 7,000 square-foot facility.
Designed as a multi-use space, the Baumann Centre is the main rehearsal space for POV's opera productions, and a venue for our artist training and community engagement and education activities, including exhibits, conferences, lectures, and workshops. As the Centre also features a large commercial kitchen, it is an ideal venue for receptions and special events for POV's patrons and donors.
Because the Baumann Centre provides the only acoustically engineered space in Greater Victoria that is designed explicitly for music making, workshops, and opera rehearsals, it is creating enhanced opportunities for artistic creation, public engagement and artist training, not only for Pacific Opera Victoria, but for other community organizations, including the Greater Victoria Youth Orchestra, the Victoria Children's Choir, and the Greater Victoria Performing Arts Festival, which use the space for their musical programs,
The heart of the Opera Centre is Wingate Studio, 2,500-square foot rehearsal and music making space, named in honour of donor Lydia Wingate. Wingate Studio is not only practical, but beautiful. A stunning acoustic ceiling canopy has been created by Kwagiulth Artist and former opera singer Carey Newman.
This magnificent piece of First Nations art helps make the Opera Centre something very special indeed – a place of musical and visual delight, where artists, young people, and the community can explore opera.
We look forward to welcoming you into our new Home for Opera!
The inspiring generosity of many patrons and donors provided funds for the renovations to the Baumann Centre and helped support this expansion of POV's commmunity programming to fulfill our long-term vision for community art-making, artist training, and youth education.
The Centre is named in honour of the late Victoria philanthropist Egon Baumann, whose Egon Baumann Music Foundation, chaired by Eric Charman, made a $500,000 gift to name the Centre and to establish the Egon Baumann Fund for Pacific Opera Victoria.
Major funding was provided by the Department of Canadian Heritage Cultural Spaces Fund and the British Columbia Creative Spaces Program. Many other generous donors contributed to the project in order to create this wonderful gift to the community.
Many features in the Centre, including Wingate Studio, are named in honour of donors to the project. All donors to the Opera Centre Naming Campaign are also acknowledged on a special dedicated Donor Wall for Opera Centre donations.
Please consider making a donation to support Pacific Opera Victoria's ongoing artistic and community programming, including our education programs offered at the Baumann Centre.
THE BAUMANN CENTRE: A New Home for Pacific Opera Victoria
Funded by the Government of Canada / Financé par le gouvernement du Canada
Guests attend a reception in Wingate Studio in the Baumann Centre
The cedar acoustic canopy by Carey Newman.