In looking back at 2014, I feel fortunate to have had such a wonderful year. Artistically speaking, there were several inspiring performances. One production I conducted that stands out in my mind was a truly amazing production of Beethoven’s only opera, Fidelio. This production was with the Manitoba Opera where I serve as the Music Advisor and Principal Conductor. The singers were absolutely brilliant and the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra played beautifully. The sets and costumes were designed by the company’s multi-talented Director of Production, Sheldon Johnson. They were stark in design and yet perfectly suited to the production. The Stage Direction (by company CEO and General Director, Larry Desrochers) was topnotch and the concept was very clever indeed. The production was tied into the community in a highly meaningful fashion in several ways including: being produced close to the opening date of the Canadian Museum for Human Rights in Winnipeg, the opera’s theme made relevant to the community by inviting members of the local refugee community to actually appear on stage as part of the show and by featuring several excellent professional singers from Winnipeg. This was a truly inspiring production and I am proud to be associated with one of Canada’s leading opera companies, the Manitoba Opera.