Lyric Celebrates Opera’s Brightest Star with a Gala to Match

Lyric Celebrates Opera’s Brightest Star with a Gala to Match

In 1993, Lyric Opera of Chicago audiences first experienced the magic of Renée Fleming as she stepped onstage to sing the title role in Carlisle Floyd’s “Susannah.” With her undeniable presence, ability to transform into a character, and rich, melodic voice, Ms. Fleming quickly became known in the opera world and beyond as “The People’s Diva.” Since that production she has done it all, from performing the National Anthem at the 2014 Super Bowl, to receiving the National Medal of the Arts from Former President Barack Obama, to successfully crossing over into the musical theater realm with her Broadway debut in “Carousel” alongside “Waitress” star Jessie Mueller.

Lyric Opera of Chicago: Renee Fleming
Renée Fleming (Photo by Timothy White/Decca.)

Renée Fleming has championed major projects both on- and offstage, joining the Lyric family in a new capacity as Creative Consultant in 2010. Her work has spanned traditional genres and art forms. Under Ms. Fleming’s vision, Lyric co-created a commissioned piece based on Richard Wagner’s “Ring” cycle in collaboration with Chicago’s improvisation powerhouse The Second City. She also introduced the “Chicago Voices” initiative, which has successfully continued to bring together musical styles that range from hip-hop to folk in an effort to connect Lyric with new audiences throughout the Chicagoland area. Onstage, Ms. Fleming has made it possible for Lyric to continue progressing the operatic canon with the 2014 world premiere of “Bel Canto,” based on Ann Patchett’s best-selling novel (which also inspired the recent motion picture starring Julianne Moore.)

The 2018/19 Season at Lyric marks Renée Fleming’s 25th Anniversary of her onstage debut, and they are celebrating with a night fit for a true diva on Saturday, March 23. The evening begins with a concert that will highlight Renée Fleming’s relationship with Lyric, along with the Lyric Orchestra and a host of stars. Fellow opera divas Sondra Radvanovsky and Susan Graham, Tenor Lawrence Brownlee, and Chicago favorites Quinn Kelsey and Christian van Horn are among some of the colleagues who will join Ms. Fleming for the ultimate musical toast.

This one-night-only event will also feature a glittering Gala at the newly-remodeled Ritz-Carlton directly following the performance, chaired by Mrs. Lester Crown. Celebrate with Lyric in style as they pay tribute to opera’s shining star with dinner and dancing (to the electric sounds of The Stu Hirsh Orchestra) until the clock strikes midnight. The glamour of this special evening will be matched only by Ms. Fleming herself!

Interested in attending? Tickets are available at