Vancouver Opera's new general director Kim Gaynor. Photo: Rafal Gersak for The Globe and Mail

Vancouver Opera presents dramatic works onstage, but there has been some drama offstage as the company shifts from a traditional season to festival model – and back again, sort of. Two years ago, as it struggled with the same issue many opera companies deal with – aging audiences and declining ticket sales – VO announced a bold move: to scrap its season and mount a festival instead.

At the 2015 news conference announcing the change, VO board chair Pascal Spothelfer called it “the most important and probably also the most innovative change at Vancouver Opera since it was founded.”

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