The Rain Couldn’t Kill the Vibe at Last Night’s Operanation

There’s something nice about the torrential rain when you’re inside the glass walls of the Four Seasons Centre for the Arts.

At least, there was last night.

And that’s because Operanation, a fundraising initiative of the Canadian Opera Company, was back for its 11th year.

Though we suspect that the weather was to blame for the late arrival of guests (which meant the party took awhile to really get started), by the time international electro-pop sensation Yelle took the stage, they were met with a packed house.

As a row of photographers clicked away, the now energetic and ready-to-party guests swarmed the stage and watched from the upper levels, dancing to the sounds of the French group, who are currently on a North American tour. Things got really amplified once Yelle was joined by members of the Canadian Opera Company’s Ensemble Studio for a special mash-up performance.

Judging from the post-show buzz, it’s safe to say that both Yelle and opera music in general made more than a few new fans.

Of course, there was food.

A gourmet paella station on the main floor remained frequented throughout the evening, especially once the late night munchies hit. Other highlights included a Spanish cheese and Serrano ham station and a dessert churro station with all its amazing smelling goodness that wafted from the second floor.

Ample bartenders ensured that wait times for drinks were kept to a minimum – a luxury sometimes absent from other packed young professional-filled charity events. If there were some converted opera lovers in the house, there were also some new whiskey lovers. Canadian whiskey-based cocktails created by David Mitton of The Harbord Room, like the Fall Fiesta (Lot No. 40 Canadian Rye Whiskey, Pike Creek Canadian Whiskey, cinnamon, clove, and aromatic bitter) were quick crowd pleasers.

This year, Operanation hosted three Canadian contemporary artists: Keith Cole, Derek Liddington, and Orest Tataryn. For a break from the booze and the banter (and to give stiletto-clad feet a break), Derek Liddington’s activation involved a recomposed version of Claude Debussy’s “Jeux,” performed by two electric guitars and a male opera singer in the opera house’s royal box every 30 minutes.

The “life of the party award” goes to the pack of over-the-top (and very Instagram-worthy) drag queens. Not only were they happy to pose for pictures, they lead an impromptu interpretative dance at the end of the night in which dozens of guests followed.

Picture a perfectly synched, animated, and very dramatic aerobics class.

Aka: amazingness.

The night continued at Soho House for the official after party, where all you had to do was flash your ticket to access the venue’s coveted doors.

And yes, we’re guessing there were quite a few hangovers this morning. Good thing it’s Friday.

Click here to see our full photo gallery.


Images by: Shawn Goldberg

Want more updates on the most Notable things happening so you know before your colleagues do? Get our exclusive newsletter here and follow us on Twitter for all the latest.