Founded as a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization in June 2000, Omaha Performing Arts (OPA) is the largest arts institution in Nebraska, and dedicated to enriching the lives of the citizens of Omaha and surrounding communities. Serving over 350,000 patrons annually in its two venues, the Orpheum Theater and Holland Performing Arts Center, the organization presents the best of Broadway, jazz, blues, dance, comedy, speakers, family and popular entertainment, along with a range of educational programs and free community events. The organization is concluding its 11th anniversary of operations and the opening of the Holland Center, and has reached over 3.3 million patrons during that time.
Landmark Venues and World-Class Performances
Located in downtown Omaha, the Orpheum Theater and Holland Performing Arts Center are vital to the city’s cultural life. The Orpheum Theater is a 2,600-seat proscenium theater that was built in 1927 and received a major renovation in 2002 plus subsequent additional capital improvements. It serves as home to major touring Broadway productions including Disney’s THE LION KING, WICKED and THE BOOK OF MORMON, which are presented by Omaha Performing Arts in association with Broadway Across America. OPA also welcomes the finest dance companies, stand-up comedians, contemporary music artists and other theatrical productions to the venue. In addition, the theater hosts Opera Omaha, a variety of private and community events, such as high school graduations, and local dance recitals and weddings.
The Holland Performing Arts Center is a state-of-the-art performance facility that opened in 2005 and includes the 2,000-seat Peter Kiewit Concert Hall, 200-400-seat Suzanne and Walter Scott Recital Hall and the outdoor Carl G. Mammel Courtyard with a capacity of up to 600. When the Holland Center opened, it was instantly heralded for its stunning architecture and superior acoustics. At the Holland, OPA presents a wide range of musical events—from legendary jazz and blues artists to country and contemporary music ensembles, as well as world music, speakers and family performances. The performing arts center’s stage has been graced by numerous award-winning and legendary entertainers, including Wynton Marsalis, Yo-Yo Ma, Kristin Chenoweth, and the Mormon Tabernacle Choir. In addition to hosting the Omaha Symphony, a variety of private and community events—weddings, receptions and corporate gatherings—occur at the Holland. Other series include National Geographic Live, the 1200 Club, and Jazz on the Green.
Education and Community Involvement
More than 220,000 students have been reached through the organization’s education and community engagement offerings which include Student Matinees, Master Classes, and four programs in association with national organizations: the Nebraska High School Theatre Awards, Carnegie Hall’s Musical Explorers, Disney’s Musical Theater in Schools, and Jazz at Lincoln Center’s Webop program. OPA also works regularly with local community partners such as social service agencies in conjunction with its touring artists.
Integral to Omaha’s Cultural Life
Omaha Performing Arts is located in Omaha, Nebraska with a population of approximately 1.3 million within a 60-minute radius. Omaha is the 42nd largest city in the nation and was ranked #2 for “Best Cities to Find a Job” in 2015 by Fortune and #2 for “Best US Cities for Millennial College Students” in 2015 by CNBC. The state of Nebraska and Omaha rank high compared to other areas of the country regarding business climate and quality of life. The City of Omaha is home to four Fortune 500 companies, including Kiewit Construction, Berkshire Hathaway, Mutual of Omaha, and Union Pacific.
Omaha Performing Arts has received both local and national recognition for its quality venues and performing arts programming. The Orpheum Theater and Holland Performing Arts Center have become two of Omaha’s most popular attractions with nearly 50% of the patrons coming from outside Douglas County, generating $40 million of economic impact annually. As steward of its two landmark venues and presenter of world-class performances and educational programs, Omaha Performing Arts continues to ensure a bright future for the arts in Nebraska and beyond.