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    Every Gift has a story: Roger and Linda Knapp

    Roger and Linda KnappThe Santa Fe Opera is fortunate to have a number of loyal and dedicated volunteers, some who have been involved for many years of the company’s 56 year history and some only for the its last decade or less. Roger and Linda Knapp are two later such volunteers having moved from Telluride, Colorado in 2001 and became involved with the Opera from almost day one. Roger recently said, “While still unpacking boxes during the first week of our 2001 move to Santa Fe, we hastened out to the Opera to volunteer in any capacity.  We never left.  The rest is history!”

    And this was even before having seen their first Santa Fe Opera performance. They were to attend their first performance during that 2001 season. “After a 23 year drought of not experiencing ‘live opera’ while living in Telluride it was fantastic to experience opera in the magical outdoor setting of the renowned Santa Fe Opera with that season’s opening production of Donizetti’s Lucia di Lammermoor.

    Opera has been important to Roger since hearing Leonard Warren in Verdi’s Rigoletto at the Old Met on his 14th birthday.  He was hooked.  The SFO is important to Linda because it was her entry point to live opera that has become for her a passion.  “We both feel SFO is important because it brings internationally acclaimed performers and productions to the Southwest in addition to introducing young people to the art form through the work of the Education Department.”

    The Knapps have become very involved with the Education Department efforts and particularly appreciate their role as ambassadors for the Opera through leading backstage tours. “One of our favorite tour stories – out of many – is the tour we led in 2007 for a delightful Santa Fe resident in a wheel chair who was accompanied by her son.  She had seen each SFO production since the opening season in 1957.  This tour completed her 50th anniversary events. We gained so much more from her than she gained from us as docents.”

    These experiences as well as appreciating the openness of  the Opera’s staff to incorporate apprentices, performers, docents and volunteers as ‘extended family’ of the Santa Fe Opera, led them to consider making a planned gift to show their appreciation and love for this company. Roger and Linda said when asked why, “The Santa Fe Opera is a major part of our life.  The annual festival season brings us so much pleasure. Naturally we want to give back.”

    When asked about advice for those who were considering making a gift they shared without hesitation, “JUST DO IT!  There is great satisfaction in knowing you are assuring the future of The Santa Fe Opera for generations to come.”

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