Twin Cities Opera Guild is dedicated to supporting high quality opera and music education for elementary, middle and high school students and the general public. We are an independent, non-profit organization, not affiliated with any opera company.


The Guild looks forward to serving future generations of children and young adults, encouraging the love of fine music and a passion for the pageantry of opera. In today's world, TCOG's work is more important then ever.


We are an all-volunteer organization founded in 1952. Educational programs in the schools started in the early 60's. In 1976 our parent company, St. Paul Civic Opera, merged with Minnesota Opera, and we voted to become an independent organization - the only one of its kind in the nation. The following year our name was changed to Twin Cities Opera Guild to reflect the changing times and its new independent status. Opera Education became the principal mission of the new organization.

View our Historical Timeline


The “Men’s Board” of the Saint Paul Civic Opera requests the formation of a “Women’s Auxiliary” to sell tickets. The first meeting was held at the home of Mrs. W. Homer Sweeney.


The Women’s Guild of the Saint Paul Civic Opera holds its first Candlelight Dinner as a fund-raising event.


The Women’s Guild auditions singers in New York and creates the Artists-in-Residence Quartet, which reaches 75 schools in its peak year and many thousands of students over the next ten years.


St. Paul Opera merges with Minnesota Opera.


The Women’s Guild votes to incorporate as Twin Cities Opera Guild (TCOG) as a 501(c)(3) independent organization. 


The TCOG Board of Directors raises $13,000 to become a charter supporter of the new Ordway Music Theater.


Minneapolis Public Schools and Twin Cities Opera Guild partner to present Cinderella and Bastien Bastienna in 16 schools for over 9000 students.


Twin Cities Opera Guild commissions an original opera for presentation in schools: The Andrews Family at the Turn of the Century.


Twin Cities Opera Guild funds performances of The Green Children in local schools.


We receive a very generous bequest from Board Member Jean Lemberg and establish a special account to fund needed administrative costs such as our website and marketing programs.


The 60th anniversary of the founding of Twin Cities Opera Guild.


A second large bequest is received from Board Member Joan T. Smith. We establish the Joan T. Smith Award to fund incoming students at the School of Music, University of Minnesota specializing in vocal music.