"I was first encouraged to audition for the Olga Forrai Foundation by a tenor colleague of mine, with whom I was singing Carmen, who knew I was about to embark on my first European audition tour.  I was just beginning to sing dramatic mezzo repertoire, and had a Santuzza coming that was my first foray into verismo.  I was at a point in my career where I was working regionally at good houses in America, but was having trouble as I was making the switch into this new Fach.  Most houses would not consider me for this repertoire until I had actually performed it, and was older, and so Europe was very attractive for someone like me needed to get their feet wet in new repertoire over many many performances.  I was in need of funds to prepare this new repertoire for my engagements in Europe, and I can actually say without the Olga Forrai Foundation that my career now would not be happening.  The Olga Forrai Foundation allowed me to be true to myself as an artist and make the big leap over the pond! It is such a worthwhile Foundation, and I just hope they all know how much they have meant to me”
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             JENNIFER FEINSTEIN (mezzo-soprano)

''As a recipient of numerous Olga Forrai grants, the Olga Forrai Foundation was extremely helpful to me for my growth and development as a young opera singer. I was so impressed with the organization and the Board members for their passion for opera and their kindness and generosity, which I benefited from greatly. They gave me the opportunity to further my career in assisting with the expenses for auditioning, audition preparation such as coaching and voice lessons, and travel expenses. I am extremely grateful for all of the assistance the foundation has given to me, which has given me the opportunity to further pursue my career as an opera singer. I hope, one day soon, to be able to return the favor to the Olga Forrai Foundation to help future young and talented opera singers and their endeavors.''
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            JOHN P. HUCKLE (bass)

"The Olga Forrai Foundation aided my career at just the right moment.  Though I had sufficient talent and lots of drive, opera companies simply didn't want to take a chance on my dramatic voice, because of my youth. The support offered by the Foundation helped me to get the coaching, lessons, and supplies essential to my success.  Now in my 5th and final year of grant eligibility, I look back on this half-decade with humility and immense gratitude for the Foundation's generosity."
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             CLAY HILLEY (tenor)

"I am so grateful to the Olga Forrai Foundation for all the encouragement and support which has made possible lessons and coaching to prepare for new roles and expand my repertoire to prepare for upcoming work. The Foundation's belief in my artistry is a true blessing."
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              KEVIN THOMPSON (bass)

It is no secret in the opera world that the more rare, dramatic have it harder. We are faced with a reality of fewer opportunities, often being "late bloomers", both vocally and technically, and thus can easily fall through the cracks, particularly in these tough years between college and entering the professional world of opera.  It is certainly difficult for the large voiced among us to reach a stage in our development where we are ready to book a European audition tour or to finally be offered a role with a reputable, professional company as well as given the gift of financial support in preparation for such opportunities.  This is why the work the Olga Forrai Foundation does is of such significance and I am personally so grateful for the Foundation's support in preparing for the biggest opportunity of my life so far, my Metropolitan Opera Debut! 

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               KAROLINA PILOU (mezzo-soprano) 

Today we have an entire world of opera houses searching for dramatic voices able to sing the most demanding parts. We need to train and train but then also eventually be found by these houses.  This wonderful Foundation is not only making it possible for me to train and study my crazy dramatic parts, but also travel so that I can be found. And last but definitely not least, I am so grateful for their encouragement in general! Thank you with all my heart!!! 
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              MITHRA MASTROPIERRO (Soprano)